Taylor Swift slams ‘external entity’ over Ticketmaster tour sales fiasco

Taylor Swift performs onstage during iHeartRadio’s Z100 Jingle Ball 2019 presented by Capital One on December 13, 2019 in New York City.

Kevin Mazur | Getty Images

Taylor Swift responded to her fans Friday after living nation‘s Ticketmaster said a general public ticket sale for the superstar’s ‘Eras’ tour was canceled due to insufficient tickets to meet the high demand.

“It’s really difficult for me to entrust these relationships and allegiances to an outside entity and it’s excruciating for me just to watch mistakes happen without recourse,” Swift wrote in a message posted to Instagram. She did not mention Live Nation or Ticketmaster in her statement.

“I will not apologize to anyone because we have asked them several times if they can handle this type of demand and we have been assured that they could. It’s really amazing that 2.4 million people got tickets but it really pisses me off that many of them feel like they went through multiple bear attacks to get them,” she wrote.

The demand for Taylor Swift concert tickets has exceeded all expectations, says the CEO of Liberty Media

Separately, the New York Times reported Friday that the Justice Department has opened an antitrust investigation into the practices of parent company Live Nation. According to the report, the probe goes ahead of Swift ticket sales this week. The Justice Department declined to comment.

Live Nation, Ticketmaster and the company’s largest shareholder, Liberty Media, also did not immediately comment on Swift’s statement Friday or the Times report on a Justice Department investigation.

Ticketmaster announced cancellation times after Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei defended Ticketmaster on Thursday. Maffei earlier this week blamed a surge in demand from 14 million users, including bots, for website disruptions and slow presale queues.

“It’s a feature of Taylor Swift. The page should open up to 1.5 million verified Taylor Swift fans,” Maffei told CNBC’s Squawk on the Street. “We had 14 million hits on the site, including bots that weren’t supposed to be there.”

Maffei said Ticketmaster sold more than 2 million tickets Tuesday and demand for Swift “could have filled 900 stadiums.”

The “Eras” tour is scheduled to begin March 17 in Glendale, Arizona.

Read Swift’s full statement:

Spring. It goes without saying that I am extremely protective of my fans. We’ve been doing this together for decades and over the years I’ve brought so many elements of my career into the house. I did this SPECIFICALLY to improve the quality of my fans’ experience by doing it myself with my team who care as much about my fans as I do. It’s really difficult for me to entrust these relationships and allegiances to an outside entity, and it’s excruciating for me to just watch mistakes happen without recourse.

There are a variety of reasons why people have had such a hard time getting tickets and I am trying to figure out how this situation can be improved in the future. I will not apologize to anyone because we asked them several times if they could handle this type of demand and we were assured that they could. It’s really amazing that 2.4 million people got tickets but it really pisses me off that many of them feel like they went through multiple bear attacks to get them.

And for those who didn’t get tickets, all I can say is that I hope we have more opportunities for all of us to get together and sing these songs.

Thanks for wanting to be there. You have no idea how much that means.

-CNBC’s Sarah Witten contributed to this article.

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