Tonight there have been a lot of potential audience members left fuming at Fremantle Media and the Nine Network as they were turned away tonight from a recording of an episode of Hole in the Wall at the Docklands Central City Studios in Melbourne.
A couple of regular readers of What’s On The Tube have complained that they have been treated poorly and were not notified of the overbooking problem. Some people had to leave their workplaces early in order to meet the strict conditions that are placed on audience members.
One of the people turned away Anna has told What’s On The Tube that she did not want to be late for the recording which started at 7:30pm, so turned up at 7pm, only to be told by security staff 35 minutes later after standing in the cold weather that she could not gain entry as the session had been overbooked.
Anna was not the only person turned away with an estimated extra 80 – 100 people waiting outside the Docklands studio in the same situation. It’s not an easy feat for everyone to get to Docklands, in Anna’s case she had to leave work an hour early, travel 2 hours by car and also had to go on City Link costing an addition $12.00 for a pass.
Another reader Shannon has left a comment on the site saying that she ordered tickets for the show weeks ago and turned up early for the recording. She was also turned away at the gate, and was told that the audience had been overbooked by 70 percent because of the drop-out rate, with Shannon having to organise a baby sitter for her child, while also having to spend money to use Melbourne’s toll road.
Having been to a couple of shows, I can vouch that especially the Nine Network is very strict in the way it manages its audience compared to the others. However not informing people that an overbooking has occurred is outrageous, not everyone lives in the city and I know personally I have to drive over an hour to get to a recording of a show to review it for this site, so how these people are feeling.
If you have had any problems in dealing with the television networks, by all means let us know about it here and we will try and get the word out, either by leaving a comment or sending an e-mail to whatsonthetube [at] gmail.com (wow that really sounded like Tracy Grimshaw on A Current Affair asking for a story, that felt strange)
Below is an e-mail I received from Shannon explaining her side of the story.
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So we arrived at 7pm, after organising a baby sitter for our 1 year old son, purchasing Citylink pass and driving for almost an hour. Just as we arrived at the gate we noticed a sign in front of it saying ‘Studio Seats Full’ and a woman was standing with a couple of security guards behind the gate. I said to her “Are you serious?”, and she replied “I’m sorry we normally have a 70% dropout rate so we overbook on purpose, but I have been doing this for a long time and this has never happened before. We have had an unusually good turnout and unfortunately we can not fit anyone else in”.
Within about a minute there were probably 30 people standing around the gate. A few people said “But I have just driven over an hour” or “But I go the night off work for this”, she offered guaranteed tickets to the 3pm show the next day but like most of the people there, we could not make such a time slot because of work/kids etc. During the couple of minutes that we were there about another 30+ people arrived with guaranteed tickets which they received from the night before because the exact same thing had occurred and they were being let through the gate.
The woman behind the gate said “If you have any grief, then please email us via the address you received your ticket information”. I sent an email detailing my grievances yesterday morning and I am still yet to receive a reply.
As we left and drove past the gate, more people were arriving and standing around waiting for an explanation. I would estimate that we saw at least 50 people turned away in the 5 minutes that we were standing there, who knows how many more turned up after we left.
In my opinion, if they were experiencing these problems with every show, why didn’t they email everyone to warn them that there was a possibility that they would not get into the show? And that there is a likelihood that since they overbook by 70%, that this would mean probably only half of those who turned up would actually get in? Then I would have happily forfeited my tickets and not bothered with going to all the hassle of going there.
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