ICv2 interviewed ReedPop Group Vice President Lance Fensterman about this year’s comic book convention in New York City, the 2012 New York Comic Con. One of the things discussed in the interview was the crowds.
Since the New York Comic Con’s first year, in 2006, the convention has been plagued with an overcrowding problem. People with pre-paid tickets are forced to stand outside in long lines, unable to enter the Javits Center. In years past, the overcrowding problem was caused by ReedPOP selling too many tickets. This year, this wasn’t the problem. Instead, it was blamed on counterfeit badges.
I was very comfortable with the number of tickets I allowed to be sold. I think we have some issues around counterfeiting of badges. We confiscated a lot of counterfeited badges, and I think there are probably more out there. That’s a function of selling out faster and earlier than we ever have that we have to address.
Do I think it was too crowded on Saturday and Sunday? Probably. Do I think that’s a function of paying customers? No I don’t.
Counterfeit badges? Really? It’s 2012 and tickets or badges with bar codes are the norm. Don’t badges for the New York Comic Con have bar codes? Buy a ticket to any major or even minor sporting event, whether you purchase it online or offline, and it’s going to have a bar code. When you enter the event, the ticket-taker scans your ticket with their handheld reader and if it’s legit, you’re allowed entrance. It’s been this way for so long that I honestly can’t remember a time when it wasn’t.
If counterfeit badges were indeed a problem this year, I blame ReedPop Group for allowing it to happen. They evidently designed a badge system that was too easily duplicated. Who’s fault is that, the people who purchased the fake badges or the organization that designed them?
The more likely cause of overcrowding was that they simply sold too many badges. Like they’ve done before, like they will probably continue to do.
It’s what they do.