Vancouver Olympic organizers must be getting nervous as the entire year has been plagued with challenges beyond its control. People looking to buy tickets for the Vancouver Winter 2010 Olympics wound up shutting down the system Saturday morning (14th) after the system crashed with high volumes of ticket requests. Complicating the system's capability, are the limits on how many tickets one person can buy online. The system is now back up and running smoothly later in the day.
November 17th - Correction: The shutdown was on November 7th, ONE WEEK PRIOR, delaying the official launch date and rescheduled to Nov 14th. During the relaunch, the site operated without any outages. In an telephone interview with Chaeli Walker, Marketing Manager for Tickets.com, states that the problem was not caused by Tickets.com but by a partner that creates the virtual waiting room portion of the ticket site web portal. Their official statement reads as follows;
“Tickets.com is very disappointed that the on-sale for the remaining tickets for the Vancouver Olympics was delayed a week due to technical issues. These issues were not a result of a Tickets.com system failure but of a configuration error by an upstream partner who provides our Virtual Waiting Room services.”
The Olympic Games have been controversial in Vancouver as many of the projects have gone over budget with many of the projects requiring government guarantees due to the credit crisis last year. Two of the official suppliers went through bankruptcy (Nortel and General Motors) and the last thing the Vancouver Olympic Organizers (VANOC) needed was any more glitches - and then it happened. According to a CBC report, some ticket buyers tried for up to 40 minutes - just to log onto the website just to register to get tickets - without success. Over 100,000 tickets were released for sale, including the hottest event, the Gold Medal hockey game.
Tickets.com was awarded the contract for the system in January 2008. It's not known if Sun Microsystems, the official server system for the games, which is being acquired by Oracle, is the hardware supplier for the Ticket.com solution. Bell Canada supplies all internet and internal network connectivity for the website servers and VANOC operations.