Live & Touring

Why Can’t Music Tickets Be As Cool As DEF CON’s?

Dc-compilationSince writing about ticketing innovations at outdoor festivals, I've been paying more attention to developments in ticketing technology. Surprise or not, the most innovative tickets I've discovered are the badges from renowned hackers' conference DefCon. But I'm also learning some interesting things about Flavorus and GrooveTickets.

Plus, yet another reminder of why music fans tend to hate Ticketmaster, whether or not the ticketing powerhouse is totally to blame for the fact they couldn't get Jay-Z tickets without going to a reseller.

DEFCON Documentary Teaser: The Badge

DEF CON is a unique conference focused on hackers at which a lot of people appear in public that might otherwise keep a low profile. The badges for their annual event are quite impressive and much more complicated than anything I've seen in the world of music as you can see from the above video.

Their most recent gathering in Las Vegas in July featured a variety of related designs for different groups of attendees. This year a special badge for artists and musicians performing at or participating in DEF CON was also created.

You can check out this year's badges and find out more about the hidden puzzles that requires the combined skill of hardware and software hackers to reveal.

Bonus: DEF CON XX Compilation from Gravitas Recordings.

Flavorus Introduces Flex Passes & Multi-Attraction Passes

Flavorus-logoFlavorus is a ticketing company, currently focused on services to Southern California and Hawaii including GrooveTickets, that offers a full range from paper tickets to mobile ticketing. The service is free for free events and has modest charges for paid events based on who does the payment processing.

They're developing a robust system able to handle high volume large events with flexible ticketing as well as smaller single performances.

Their most recent announcement included the news that they've introduced both a flex pass and a multi-attraction pass. Their flex pass allows event organizers to create long term passes for whole seasons of events that can include blackout dates and other restrictions. The multi-attraction pass was developed for fair and haunted events that allow for entry to specific attractions within a larger range of offerings.

Yet More Reasons People Hate Ticketmaster


Last month tickets for multiple Jay-Z concerts in Brooklyn went on sale via Ticketmaster and sold out in about 12 minutes. As MTV Hive's Carl Williott put it, "mainly because of shady secondary markets and ghost corporations and complete assholes."

Williott gathered some responses from Twitter and it's an entertaining but rather sad read. Obviously there's more to this situation than tweets reveal but it's yet another reminder of why fans are frustrated by Ticketmaster's game.

More: Social Media Check-Ins At Major Music Festivals Signal Next Phase For RFID Wristbands

Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) maintains a business writing hub at Flux Research and blogs at Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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  1. This may be an unpopular opinion, but many times it is the performers themselves that are negotiating with the likes of Stubhub, etc. to do “holds” on tickets.
    They let Ticketmaster take the negative brand equity, but really it’s the artist and Stubhub which is continually doing deals as the entity itself (rather than just aggregating ticket inventory from “those scandalous brokers”) releases the tickets at a higher price.
    In the model Stubhub wins as does the artist.
    Also, ticketing itself is not so much about the technology although it is improving each day–a lot of it from Ticketmaster itself–but it’s more about who has enough to cash to pay a venue or promoter up front.

  2. I didn’t want to get into that, not due to popularity, but because of the nature of the post.
    Even if there were more coverage of how celebs like Jay-Z work with Stubhub I’m not sure the general public would ever catch on. That’s where it would be unpopular.
    Actually Ticketmaster taking the negative brand equity is an excellent point. To the general public their brand is trash so why not take all the flak?

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