Did Justin Bieber really sell out two shows at Madison Square Garden in 30 seconds? Come on.
—SunnysMama, via the inbox
You really think it's so impossible for Justin Bieber to sell out not one, but two, Madison Square Garden shows in less time than it takes sunlight to reach Earth? Think again...
In fact, it's entirely possible to sell out the World's Most Famous Arena in a matter of seconds. Or how about an entire Justin Bieber tour in an hour? That happened too, you know.
"What!?!" Bieber's manager, Scooter Braun, tweeted Saturday after hearing the news.
Yes. And I found out how it happened.
First, know this: A good chunk of the tickets for Bieber's New York shows were likely gone before they officially went on sale Saturday.
How big of a chunk? At least 10 percent of the house. Those seats were already prepurchased and set aside for record-label people, press, fan-club members, radio contest winners and other VIPs, according to a music industry insider who used to do this kind of work for the biggest promoter in the country.
"And keep in mind," my source says, "this 10 percent of the house is the best 10 percent."
Some of those presold tickets were also likely reserved for the Biebs himself. If that's the case, there's a good chance that Bieber may—like many of the world's biggest touring acts—resell those tickets at an inflated price.
That's right: Pop singers are often their own scalpers these days. It's a common practice, I am told.
As for the other 90 percent of those MSG seats, ticket-selling infrastructure is no joke these days. You may not like the double-digit fees that sellers charge for their "services," but that money—some of it, at least—goes toward shrieking teens and their instant gratification.
"Yes, that's physically possible," my ticket maven tells me. "Those fees you pay to Ticketmaster? They go toward building an e-commerce engine that can handle that kind of traffic."
The result? Tickets sold out faster than you can say swag.