“HAMILTON”, the hip-hop Broadway musical about one of America’s founding fathers, has broken all sorts of box-office records. Demand is high because it is exceptionally good. But this is not the only reason tickets are so scare.
Every time the show’s producers release a new block to sell, they immediately get snapped up by “ticket bots”, high-speed ticket-buying software. The bots cut the virtual queue, manipulating and paralysing sites like Ticketmaster before real people can get a look-see.
Jeffrey Seller, “Hamilton’s” producer, has called bots “computerised cheaters”. Despite Mr Seller working with Ticketmaster—which runs software in an effort to stop bots—to get tickets into the hands of real fans, too many tickets end up on secondary market websites for substantially inflated prices.
According to Ticketmaster, about 60% of the hottest tickets are bought by bots.