UPDATED: San Diego Comic-Con 2011 International Sells Out of All Tickets; Servers Still Plagued with Crashes!


UPDATE: Ticketleap are claiming that Comic-Con International 2011 sold out in 7 HOURS, reaching a peak of 403,000 page requests per minute and a total of more than 35 million total page requests throughout the day. See their latest press statement at the bottom of the page

If you’ve been following the the saga of ticket sales for San Diego Comic-Con International 2011. You’ll know that tickets/badges went on sale on Saturday morning, after a number of  false starts (see here, and here).

After two failed attempts, the organizers decided to try out a new registration system, by selling a test run of 1,000 4-day badges without Preview Night, to make sure this plan would actually work (see here). They reported that that test worked out pretty well, and they had therefore decided to go ahead and try to launch full registration on February 5th.

Well, it seems that the new ticket servers at ticketleap.com were not quite able to cope the the massive amount of incoming requests from fans desperate to get their weekend tickets, and apparently crashed a number of times, resulting is users receiving an over capacity message. However, this was overcome by simply smacking F5 (refresh) a number of times, and the server would eventually let the user in.

Yesterday afternoon, TicketLeap Tweeted that all four-day passes had sold out, but that one-day tickets were still available. Then, in the evening, they Tweeted that Friday and Saturday had sold out, then, this morning they Tweeted that:

All @Comic_Con badges are sold out. If you didn’t receive a confirmation email on Saturday, we are sending the rest out on Monday. #sdcc

Holy cow! They sold out of all tickets in about 24 hours!!! That is insane! I hope everyone who was looking to get a ticket got one, because if you didn’t, you’re looking at paying a pretty high price for a scalper ticket (I wouldn’t advise this!).

This afternoon, Ticketleap posted a post-sales website performance analysis over on their blog:

Yesterday our platform experienced capacity issues for a 4 hour period. During this time, most functionality was either slow or unavailable. We are very sorry for the frustration and problems this caused our users. We know how critical TicketLeap is to you and no amount of unplanned downtime is acceptable. I want you to know how seriously we take this situation.

The problems on TicketLeap yesterday occurred in association with an on-sale we conducted for the wildly popular event “Comic-Con International“. While we knew the event was going to put significant demand on our system, we did not expect the traffic we received.

In December, we conducted a test sale of 1,000 tickets in coordination with Comic-Con International to gauge the traffic to the platform and to work out any problems in a controlled fashion. After the test run, we made various optimizations to meet this demand level and scaled up our architecture with Amazon Web Services significantly.

The traffic we received yesterday was several orders of magnitude higher than our high end estimate. Due to the heavy strain on the system, users for all events across our system received “Over Capacity” errors. This prevented ticket buyers from buying tickets and it prevented event organizers from managing their events.

Throughout the day, we worked to adjust the scale of our infrastructure with Amazon in an effort to meet this demand. Unfortunately, we discovered a bottleneck that didn’t allow the platform to scale as needed. We are working with the highest levels of leadership at Amazon on this issue and will be delivering a detailed technical write-up in the coming days for those who are interested.

For anyone who bought tickets on Saturday to any event on TicketLeap and did not receive their confirmation email, we will be resending those confirmation emails on Monday to ensure that you received them. If you would like to resend them manually in the meantime, click here: http://www.ticketleap.com/resend-tickets/

For anyone who has any unresolved problems, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your account representative, to our support team, or to me personally.

Thank you for your patience.


Chris Stanchak
TicketLeap, Inc.

Let’s hope that next year goes more smoothly. Why don’t they just sell them on Ticketmaster????

Update from ticketleap blog on Feb 7th:

Dear Comic-Con International Fans

In 2009, it sold out after 6 months. In 2010, it sold out in 2 months. On Saturday, Comic-Con International 2011 sold out in 7 HOURS (200x faster than last year if you’re keeping track). Needless to say, the demand was unbelievable, reaching a peak of 403,000 page requests per minute and a total of more than 35 million total page requests throughout the day. But while the event sold out in record time and the system never actually went down, things didn’t go as smoothly as we hoped. We are sorry for the frustration our system issues caused on Saturday and we are working hard to answer all of your inquiries. Below you will find the answers to the most common questions regarding ticket sales for Comic-Con International, and click here for a more detailed technical write-up for those who are interested. Also, here is a link to an article on GigaOM with their take on our technical write-up.

When will tickets go on sale again?

At this time, Comic-Con International 2011 is sold out. As refunds are processed, more tickets may become available to purchase at a later date. Please refer to Comic-Con’s website, Facebook page or Twitter page for the latest updates.

I have questions about my TicketLeap confirmation email.

TicketLeap will be re-sending all confirmation emails on Monday, February 7, 2021 (even if you received it the first time around). Your confirmation email will contain a link for each separate transaction. By default, the email shows the start date of the event (Thursday, July 21). Click the link to view the detailed list of all tickets purchased.

If you do not receive your email confirmation by Tuesday, February 8, 2011, please contact our Support Team at [email protected]

I did not receive bar coded email confirmations from EPIC Registration. How do I get my bar coded email confirmations?

EPIC Registration will send out bar coded email confirmations (separate from the TicketLeap confirmations referenced above). You will receive one bar coded confirmation from EPIC for each badge/admission type. This is your “ticket” to Comic-Con International. Please add the epicreg.com domain to your safe senders list so your confirmation will not go to your spam folder. If you do not receive one bar coded confirmation for each purchased ticket by Wednesday, February 9, 2011, please contact EPIC by email at [email protected] Your email to EPIC should include your TicketLeap confirmation number(s) and the name(s) for which you did not receive a bar coded confirmation. Note: You may not receive all of your bar coded confirmations from EPIC at the same time so please wait until Wednesday to inquire with EPIC if you have not received all of them.

How do I request a refund for Comic-Con International ticket(s)that I purchased?

All ticket refund requests will be processed directly through Comic-Con International. Please refer to their Registration Page for refund policies and instructions. TicketLeap has no authority or ability to issue refunds or handle refunds requests.

I entered incorrect information when I purchased my Comic-Con ticket(s). How can I correct the information for my badges?

If you submitted incorrect contact information when purchasing your tickets, these changes can be made on the EPIC Registration site after you receive the bar coded confirmation emails from their system. Any further questions you should have after receiving the bar coded confirmation emails from EPIC should be submitted to EPIC at [email protected] no earlier than Wednesday, February 9, 2011.

There are multiple charges on my credit card for tickets I didn’t purchase or receive. How do I correct those charges?

Most likely, what you’re seeing is a pending only charge that will drop on its own in 2-3 business days. If you received an error message while attempting your purchase and had to re-submit your information, your bank or card issuer might have temporarily pulled those funds which we cannot accept due to the error that occurred. Typically, these charges will drop in 2-3 business days but please contact your card issuer to find out when they can release the hold on those pending only charges.

For anyone who has other questions that aren’t answered above, please email [email protected]


Chris Stanchak

Related posts:

  1. 1000 Comic-Con 2011 Tickets to go on Sale, to Test New Registration System
  2. San Diego Comic-Con International Registration to Begin on February 5th (Hopefully!)
  3. Tickets for Comic-Con International: San Diego 2011 Go On Sale Monday, November 1st!
  4. 52,000 People Try to Buy 1000 Comic-Con Passes… Fight!
  5. San Diego Comic-Con 2011 Registration Goes Down, Again!


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