Singaporean mandopop singer JJ Lin’s fans were unhappy with the technical issues that occurred during the singer’s Sanctuary Finale Virtual Concert live stream on Saturday (10 July), which was meant to be the grand finale of his world tour.
JJ Lin’s Sanctuary World Tour kicked off in March 2018 and has toured 43 cities, including Singapore.
The two-hour virtual concert started at 8pm on Saturday, with tickets for the live stream going from S$38 to S$188, but the live stream started lagging just shortly after the show began and it eventually lapsed into a frozen black screen.
This has prompted viewers to voice complaints about the lagging on social media and flood the Facebook page of streaming platform partner SISTIC with angry comments.
SISTIC is a Singapore-based ticketing services provider, which 65 per cent owned by the Singapore Sports Council (SSC) and the remaining owned by The Esplanade Co Ltd, as stated by SSC in a press release dated 28 March 2008.
JJ Lin addressed the issue at the end of his concert, saying that the lagging issues were a “pity” and assured viewers that he will communicate with event organiser SISTIC about it. He also thanked all partners involved in the concert, including SISTIC.
“Sad to have learnt that so many didn’t manage to experience the show as it was intended, but I truly appreciate all the love, support and understanding from all of you!” he wrote in a Facebook post on the same day.
SISTIC subsequently issued a statement on its Facebook page on early Sunday (11 July) to apologise on the matter, saying that it was “devastated” because it was unable to resolve streaming issues with technical partner “whom we rely on for certain aspects of the live broadcast” despite giving its “best efforts”.
“Despite our best preparations including conducting stress tests, load tests and catering for double the anticipated demand, the SISTIC team encountered unforeseen issues with our technical partner which we immediately investigated but were not able to resolve in a satisfactory manner.
“As disappointed as we are about the outcome, we believe the disappointment of JJ fans are much greater. We would like to apologise unreservedly to JJ Lin, his fans, JFJ Productions, Unusual Entertainment, Isotope Productions, Partners and all crew members who worked so hard to make this highly anticipated show a reality,” it stated.
SISTIC’s CEO Joe Ow also released a statement on Sunday that the platform will be offering patrons the full refund for their virtual concert access pass of S$41 for the TIME TRAVELLER ticket tier and S$52 for all other ticket categories – which includes the full SISTIC booking fee but excludes shipped merchandise.
Mr Ow noted that the refund will be processed automatically within 30 days, and no further action is required from ticket holders.
He added that all ticket holders will also receive a one-time access link to view the encore stream, and apologised to JJ Lin, his fans and all agencies involved for the lagging issues.
“We have since taken steps to rectify the issue to ensure this does not happen again for upcoming streams,” said Mr Ow.
Netizens feel disappointed with SISTIC, say it’s incapable of handling large traffic
Penning their thoughts under the comment section of The Straits Times’ and Channel News Asia’s Facebook posts on the matter, many netizens expressed their disappointment with SISTIC and said that the refund could not compensate JJ Lin’s and his team’s hard work.
“Imagine performing for hours and this thing happens. How disappointed the team felt. Even refund to customers, and Sistics compensate $ to JJ production, the disappointment of not able to show his performance cannot be compensated,” said a netizen.
Another netizen wrote: “A refund could not compensate what was missed, the time, effort, anticipation it’s was an event and history in the making and unfortunately Sistic has gone down in history that let many down…”
A handful of netizens pointed out that the ticketing services provider is “not up to the standard” to live stream and incapable of handling large traffic, urging SISTIC to upgrade the server instead.
One netizen wrote: “Basically sistic can’t handle this kind of traffic. It lacked experience handling large internet users logging in at the same time. Just like buying the tickets in June, the website crashed! Still nothing is done by sistic to improve the situation. Hope sistic can learn through this hard lesson!”