Here’s a letter from a disgruntled basketball season-ticket holder to USC, who is upset that his upper-level seats were not upgraded this season but lower-level seats are being offered for a cheaper price to fans as part of a “Pac-10 package.”
To whom it may concern:
I cannot begin to tell you just how displeased, upset and outright offended I am at the moment regarding how I have been treated by my Alma Mater’s Ticket Office.
When season ticket renewals started up, despite the massive blows to the men’s Basketball program over the offseason, not only did I wish to renew my season tickets, but up my order from 2 tickets to 3. I also requested to upgrade my seats so I can be closer to the action of my beloved basketball team, I did not ask to change sections, I simply asked to be many rows closer in the same section I was already seated. I was told that a note would be made with my request but nothing can be promised. I assumed that this would not be a big deal considering almost every game I go to, which is well over 95% of EVERY HOME GAME there are throngs of open seats in front of me that are only full during the biggest of games (Oklahoma last year, UCLA every year, and other ranked foes that come to Galen Center). However, once I received my tickets, I found that I was stuck with the same exact seats I had last year. I decided to let it pass and just bring up the issue again next year.
In attending the games, and noticing the visibly down attendance, even when major programs like Nebraska came to town I become more and more distraught over how I was treated. Not only were there plenty of seats open in my section, but the 2 for 1 special offered in an attempt to sell more tickets means I could have saved significantly more money by NOT buying season tickets. To add insult to injury one of my friends who bought a ticket a few minutes before tip off, paid less money for his ticket then I did, and received a ticket that was actually CLOSER to the court then my season tickets in an upper corner section, just like my tickets. My friends and I were in absolute shock, and were even more enraged when we learned that the $250 Pac 10 package could net me one of “Limited number of Lower Level and Between-the-Basket seats” as stated in the email you sent yesterday. A MASSIVE upgrade over my current seats.
Based on the promotions, empty seats and great seats still available for the Pac 10 Package it is obvious the USC Basketball program is trying to fill seats…yet, here I am, one of the biggest fans, having been to almost every game in the past 3 years, upping my order despite my rent going up, despite the shaky economy, despite the fact that my 400 dollars can be spent on numerous other things to only get treated like dirt. I have turned friends into fans, getting them to buy season tickets as well. This is not the values and ethics I learned in my classes at USC, nor does the experience at all make me feel like “part of the Trojan family”. Considering how badly you are trying to fill seats, I find it to be just plain dumb to offend “your valued season ticket holders” like you have me. There is absolutely no benefit in me buying season tickets anymore, I am stuck with worse seats and I pay more for them. What benefit at all to I gain from forking over as much money as I have, thus far it seems to have only hindered my pocketbook and me.
I greatly look forward to your response to explain to me why I have been treated so poorly as I find it totally unacceptable.