Discovery/first blood tks

The place to discuss FrightFest 2018 - Dates this year are 23 - 27th August.
benj
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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by benj » Sat Aug 18, 2018 2:50 pm

Not the speediest of processes this year sadly- I was averaging 10 minutes a ticket for the first hour. If the booking system struggles this much, would it be worth considering staggering the ticket releases somehow?

In any case, once the system got back up to speed, I did eventually manage to get tickets for most of the screenings I was after (and will hopefully get into the other screenings with some patience and queueing) but I could have done without having to specify "Control how you hear from us" with *each* ticket :lol:

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by Whiptail » Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:32 pm

Soooo glad I bought all my discovery tickets last month when they became availble for the public. Cost me a buttload more but at least I was guaranteed seats.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by iomega » Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:43 pm

There has been a fair amount of unhappiness today about the number of discovery screen tickets available and the poor performance of the ticketing website. I thought I would try and put the record straight and explain.

The balance of public and pass holder seats first. This is a difficult one for us. We need to sell tickets to run the event, that's a fact of life. We've also been hit this year by the discovery screen in the Cineworld being reseated, which is good, but we lost 20 seats from the capacity meaning fewer places to go around. Between now and next Thursday ticket sales plus the walk-up business over the event will see most of what's left of the public seats go. We need to strike a balance between what is available to the public and what is available to pass holders. I've spent heaps of time over the years working on the problem. And I come to the same conclusion every time. If we made more discovery screen seats available the price would have to go up, and go up considerably, climbing towards and perhaps passed £300.

We do plan to operate standby queues, and any unsold seat will be offered to pass holders.

Now the ticket website I agree with you was a disaster today. The company who run it for us have consistently underestimated the bandwidth required for the launch of the discovery screen tickets. They have done the same the last three years now. The problem is there is no commission on the free seats so we believe they put the minimum that they can get away with into the day. The other two ticket releases this year went off without a hitch, but despite numerous assurances that they would have enough grunt available they didn't, and in our opinion this is what caused the problems.

Our ticketing system is unique. Ticket companies cannot get their head around what we want because it's so different. To alleviate the problem we may need to go to a simpler system, but we believe firmly that the system that we have is what makes FrightFest FrightFest. No other festival operates on a one seat for the whole event principle.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by ArghZombies » Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:51 pm

It was a little slow, especially to start with, but to be honest it all worked pretty well. If you selected a seat to take then you got it. No complaining about double-booking seats, it's visually clear which seats are going and how quickly. Honestly, I think this system is the best it's been for Frightfest. It's just fair really. No need to travel to London to get these tickets, no getting up super-early to queue on the day for tickets.. Everyone has the same opportunity as eachother.

Watching the general buzz for certain films it's possible to tell which Discovery screen films are going to be the popular ones, so you can jump straight to those ones first to try to get tickets. Yes, people miss out on some films, but that is always going to happen regardless of the system in plcae - there physically aren't enough tickets or seats for everyone. But some get repeated across the weekend so you do get a decent enough chance.

Really, I'd be more nervous if a new system comes along next year. The worst thing is that it's slow. But it's all still fair, and I'd take that over a big bunfight or having to stand in the rain every morning.
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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by FranksWildYears » Sat Aug 18, 2018 6:19 pm

FranksWildYears wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:20 pm
There are heaps of White Chamber tickets left.I took a while for them to come online, but they are there. Just check and looking like cover 100.
Thanks Ian - I think I'd got so used to missing out that when they weren't showing earlier I'd pretty much resigned myself to not getting one, and I was sicker about this one than others because there isn't really anything running against it I wanted to see. I now have one for this and also the short film showcase before it, so at least my Sunday is back on track :).

I don't think FF or even really the ticketing site is at fault; the size of the Cineworld discovery screen accounts for more than half of the ones I missed out on, the only broadband I currently have available is crap and I was just bloody unlucky. The bulk of my schedule every year is made up of Discovery films so I should have had a contingency plan, but I'm still fortunate enough to be going at all and if I really can't fill the gaps I now have it's not as if there's nothing else to do in Central London with a couple of spare hours.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by benj » Sat Aug 18, 2018 6:37 pm

Admittedly I’ve only been doing this about 7 years but this is unquestionably the best booking system I’ve experienced FF using in this time.

At its worst, I recall a system where you were in a virtual queue for half an hour then chose your seat only to get an obscure error nobody understood and thrown to the back of the queue again. That was hell, this is light years ahead in terms of reliability and fairness.

There are booking systems I still use that make you think you have the product until you come to complete the purchase only to find someone else beat you to it. Say what you will about the speed today but I was somewhat reassured knowing everyone was struggling the same and that once that 15 minute timer started that ticket was safely mine.

Just need to get the speed issue sorted and it’d be damn near perfect in my opinion.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by IndigoVapour » Sat Aug 18, 2018 7:44 pm

The basic system is ok, aside from the lack of processor resouces, and a few issues with specific screenings. But those things were enough that some people really lost out.

If nutickets can’t meet your needs, maybe a move to unallocated seating for the passholder block would be an option? Then just assign tickets to that block by ballot. (The main benefit would be you wouldn't get a mad rush, with some people getting the short end of the stick.)

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by scarebear » Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:35 pm

To be honest, i was cacking myself this morning as im currently in a remote part of Belgium with not much wifi. My friend had to drive me 10 miles to the nearest town with an internet cafe and i was still sceptical when i got logged on.

Yes it was slow to start with and i feared the worst when i couldn't get the first ticket for Witch in the window but patience paid off and i tried again and eureka, it worked! 5 more followed and within 20 mins i had everything i wanted.

But then came The Night Sitter my last choice, i saw at least 20 seats but every time I clicked on one it said not available. Gave up after 4 attempts at sent a message to the guys. They told me there was a problem with this film and to try later. I did 30 mins later and buggar, they had all gone!

So my only gap i now have is Sunday night so ill have to talk to helen and see what becomes available then otherwise ill be signing along in the main screen!

So to sum up, considering where i was, i feel i did well and have no complaints. My only comment was the fact that we had to keep ticking the email box, but really irs nothing. Thanks guys.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by VictorCrowley82 » Sat Aug 18, 2018 11:29 pm

I think I may have missed this but final stop didn't appear to be listed. Really wanted to go to this. Did I miss it it or will ticket allocation be done on the day?

This is a sponsored event and the sponsor decided at the last minute to change who they want at it. They now want it aimed more at the film makers attending the festival, which BTW now number over 200. People who have tickets are fine, but there will be no new tickets issued.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by SarahSmiley » Sun Aug 19, 2018 12:28 am

It was certainly a nerve wracking experience this year. First there were no tickets available for that added One Cut of the Dead and I was watching all my plans dissolve before my eyes, then suddenly they were all there and available.

Got there in the end, had to shuffle my schedule a little, but all my key ones were secured. Cannot wait for next week.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by The Soapmaker » Sun Aug 19, 2018 1:32 am

iomega wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:43 pm
Now the ticket website I agree with you was a disaster today. The company who run it for us have consistently underestimated the bandwidth required for the launch of the discovery screen tickets. They have done the same the last three years now. The problem is there is no commission on the free seats so we believe they put the minimum that they can get away with into the day. The other two ticket releases this year went off without a hitch, but despite numerous assurances that they would have enough grunt available they didn't, and in our opinion this is what caused the problems.
I don't want to over-praise what happened today - yesterday - but it really wasn't too bad. It was very slow, and the repeated GDPR question was irritating, but I wasn't constantly getting messages saying "that seat has been taken" or "you need to put something in your basket". Everything that went in the basket stayed there and ultimately ended up ready to be downloaded.

By contrast, buying weekend passes every year is an utter Stressfest, watching seats disappear - and occasionally reappear - before my eyes like candles in a hurricane as every seat I try to put in my basket hangs for 30 seconds then vanishes.... until I eventually end up with a couple of seats somewhere at the far end of row A or Z. None of that happened today.

If you do change the system please choose carefully! It could be even worse....

Yes, remember the first year we went to online ticketing?

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by ChrisReynolds » Sun Aug 19, 2018 12:16 pm

It wasn't too bad for me either. It was slow, but I was much more stressed booking the festival passes where I had several rounds of trying to select five tickets together only to be told that they were no longer available when I clicked "buy", with seats vanishing all the time.

I did my booking from the wifi of a coffee shop in Kentish town, and despite booking tickets for three separate passholders at once (I recommend Firefox's Multi-Account Containers addon for doing this), I got almost all of the tickets I wanted, including the popular "Tigers are Not Afraid", "Duke Mitchell Film Party" and "Book of Monsters" screenings. I only missed out on one ticket for one of the passholders, so one of us will have to miss out on Dead Night for Ghostland. That's OK for me, I knew that Dead Night was going to be popular but I was prioritising other films more.

It took me about five minutes per ticket per account.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by TheDukeAbides » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:46 pm

It its a slow website and missing a few Discovery tickets each year vs getting up really early to queue each day (in indifferent weather) outside the cinema to still miss getting Discovery tickets and then falling asleep in films later that day then I'll take the former every time.

One it rolls passed the GDPR screen you've pretty much got your ticket and everyone else is being plagued by slowness so it really is just a question of which films you really want to see vs which are the most popular and planning the order of purchase accordingly.

I missed one Disco film and that was only based on a punt and the probability of a nice free poster. Spent an hour getting 7 films, I'm not upset with that at all.

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by Lunny68 » Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:36 pm

It's difficult to please everyone completely. People will have their ideal line up planned, but you will miss the odd movie here and there, but then you may then be pleasantly surprised by the main screen movie that you see instead. I think we should definitely remember how much the ticketing has come along over the years, particularly as demand has increased.

It wasn't too long ago, when it all crashed and Ian had to sort it all out manually. Thankfully for us, and Ian's sanity, those days seem to be behind us!

Sure, every year I've wanted to see as much as possible, but It's not always possible. However, I've managed to attend in some shape or form, be it Festival pass, Day pass or just a handful of single tickets, every year since 2009, and have enjoyed every minute of it. (Apart from Shockwave Darkside and Tulpa)

It's not for me to cast aspersions on a certain FrightFest director whose choice these two films were, but on the other hand I have to put my hand up and confess that I had input into Bubba's Chili Parlour and Zombie Women of Satan

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Re: Discovery/first blood tks

Post by DJBenz » Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:58 pm

Lunny68 wrote:
Sun Aug 19, 2018 6:36 pm
It's not for me to cast aspersions on a certain FrightFest director whose choice these two films were, but on the other hand I have to put my hand up and confess that I had input into Bubba's Chili Parlour and Zombie Women of Satan
Fun fact: I shared a flat in Gateshead with Zombie Women of Satan director Warren Speed back in my 20s. :lol:

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