Each year the demand for PAX gets more and more fervent, with badges selling out faster each year. Despite being a very festive occasion for fans that were able to buy badges, for those that weren’t as lucky, it unfortunately turns into a day of disappointment and frustration. We see a lot of this on social media and in our inboxes, so as in previous years, I wanted to answer some of the common questions and directly address some of the suggestions we’ve received.
Why don’t you print more badges?
There is only so much physical space we have for the show, so firecode and safety regulations dictate how many badges we are allowed to distribute.
Why don’t you do a lottery system? Why not do a pre-pre-reg system? Why not do system X?
The fundamental problem is supply vs. demand. We have the supply for X number people (aka the # of people we can safely fit into the venue). We estimate demand to be about 75k more than X, meaning that no matter how you skin this, there will be about 75k people that aren’t happy because they wanted a badge and were unable to purchase one. All another system would do is take badges from one person and give them to another.
Why not give advance notice?
Besides there being a massive server load issue, it also gives scalpers the ability to mobilize their teams to buy lots of smaller orders. Not giving advance notice is actually pretty close to a lottery system, in the sense that if you were unavailable during that pre-registration window, you were not selected.
Why aren’t there more 3 day badges?
Although we’re not really messing too much with the mix at this point, I can say that after this year, there’s definitely a strong consideration to do away with 3 day badges entirely. Besides giving more individual people access to PAX (we know there are a lot of folks that buy 3 days and just attend a day or two), we also think this will further help alleviate a bit of the scalping issue.
Why are you being such greedy jerks by making people pay more for three single day badges?
I don’t think you can nail us for allowing scalpers to exist and then turn around and get us for overcharging. The only reason scalpers are enticed to scalp is because we (purposefully) don’t charge market rates.
Speaking of scalpers, how is it that you let scalpers buy every/all of the/most of the badges?
Most people point to ebay and craigslist and say “Look at this, this is ridiculous.” A couple of things about that:
1. The number of badges you see from now until PAX for resale is still a very small percentage of the total badges we sold.
2. We analyzed the data recently, and the average number of “sets” (Friday-Sunday or 3-days) purchased per order was 1.45. Keep in mind the maximum number of sets you could purchase was 4. The % of orders that purchased the maximum number of sets was 2.1%
3. We have a number of flags for scalpers set, and after going through the data, we have identified those that clearly tried to “trick” the system and buy badges in bulk. All of their orders are being cancelled, so watch out when you buy on ebay/CL.
I heard there was a bug in the system that forced your state to AL.
This only impacted those with certain versions of Firefox browsers. You can go into showclix and change any information on orders that have been verified. If you were impacted and are still having trouble, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get you sorted out.
PAX East 2015 Registration is currently live! If you haven’t, grab your tickets while you can! We’re also accepting panel submissions, if you’d like to chance to speak to an audience of the most passionate and savvy audiences around. Check it out at http://east.panels.paxsite.com.
We know, it isn’t the news you were probably hoping to hear, but panel submissions are live. Registration won’t be open until after we wrap up PAX Aus, so expect to see tickets live sometime in November. In the mean time, if you’ve got something to say and would like a chance to educate, entertain, and/or fascinate the audience of you’ve got until December 22nd to submit something our way. As always, capacity is limited, so good luck! You can make your submission at east.panels.paxsite.com. Good luck!