Schmuck of the Week

Great American Beer Festival scalpers drive us to drink

It's hard to know who to be angry at for what many people are calling #GABFail -- the ticketing fiasco that has marred the upcoming Great American Beer Festival. The Boulder-based Brewers Association put 49,000 tickets up for grabs beginning at 10 a.m. on August 2. But within two minutes, at least two of four GABF sessions had sold out.

The Brewers Association later tweeted that it took 45 minutes for all of the tickets to sell, although many people dispute that.

Tough tickets are always a problem (remember Radiohead and the Book of Mormon? How about Broncos tickets this year?). But GABF had never experienced anything like this before: it took a week to sell out in 2011. But beer lovers are angry. Really angry -- and they've expressed their feelings in droves on the organization's Facebook page.

Most people are blaming scalpers -- and indeed, there are already hundreds and hundreds of tickets for sale on eBay and StubHub for three or four times face value. If it's true that the scalpers figured out a way around GABF and Ticketmaster's anti-scalping practices and four-ticket limits, then they really are to blame.

And that's too bad. You would hope no one will pay those prices and they'll come down closer to face value by the time the festival starts on October 11 -- but that probably won't be the case. And Denver will lose out because of it.

More from our Shmuck archive: "D.J. Williams, Broncos linebacker, is a shmuck of non-human proportions."