Scalper tickets hit $500 (and still dropping)

There has been much speculation, including by us, that the secondary market for tickets was being artificially manipulated. Burning Man got to publicly rail against it, while reaping all the benefits. One wonders if any of the “family and friends” tickets handed out to insiders, or any of the thousands of new tickets, were turned into money by other, more lucrative means than STEP.

Anyway, no matter now. The speculators have been flushed out of the market, leaving what appears to be amateurs left holding an asset that is rapidly declining in value. As we get closer to the event, ticket prices are dropping – the opposite of what one would expect from a truly “sold out” event. As I write this there are plenty of tickets online going for about $470, and I know a few floating around on the word of mouth network for less than $390. With a month to Burning Man, I no longer know anyone looking for tickets, and I know several people trying to sell them. So if you’re trying to sell tickets, don’t be greedy, move them quick.

As capitalists, we commend the organizers of the Burning Man ticket fiasco, for extracting maximum return through maximum misinformation, leading to market distortion. Straight out of the Wall St playbook, and well executed. As Burners, it sucks. In the same way, we could commend the chutzpah of oil price speculators, starving the world with inflation simply by arranging military exercises and getting their pocketbook politicians to throw out some belligerent Holy War rhetoric. However we do not commend the consequences, in either case – this idea of “the end justifies the means, and money is the end” is a dinosaur of the last Age which must croak now that we speak the Language of We, in the new Golden Age of Aquarius. Wall St = Fertility 1.0, burn the banksters!

For the suckers who paid over $1000, don’t say we didn’t warn you.

7 comments on “Scalper tickets hit $500 (and still dropping)

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  6. I have to say, knowing not much this about that, that this blog has been pretty spot on in terms of the numbers, its assessment, and its predictions. It was accurate to say closer to 70,000 than 50,000 (60,900 being significantly closer to the higher number); the notion that people were being driven to buy all tickets at higher prices to avoid being shut out, the scramble to then include theme camps, and the fact that the “inflation” of the real market price was specious and due to mis-information (or, and the very least, and I think this was fairly assessed, less than complete transparency, which amounts to mis-information given the probabilities). It seems like “sins of omission” more than “commission” were, to a degree, perpetrated on the community, resulting in TONS of people deciding not to go to Burning Man this year, who might have gone if a) it had not seemed like there might not be enough tickets, or b) they didn’t get a slightly dry and dusty taste in their mouth owing to the way the Org handled what I think has been quite accurately described as a “fiasco”… I indulge here in the luxury of anonymity. But I admire this blog for calling it like it saw it, and calling it, again at least on the numbers and how the numbers would shake out (and again, knowing nothing about what happened to all the tickets…) accurately.

    • thanks Toburn. I have called it like I’ve seen it, and we will probably never know the whole truth. I wouldn’t begrudge the right of anyone involved in BMOrg to profit from the event – that’s why we
      live in America. But, BMorg should open their economy up to the Burners who participate in it – that way people can prosper together and transparently, instead of off-the-books transactions that take place in the shadows .

      “radical openness” would be a great principle for Burners and BMOrg alike. Unfortunately, they are looking for a new manager to handle the “grey areas” (escaped aliens from nearby Area 51?). So, increased transparency is not looking too likely from “BMorg 2.0”

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