Good morning, Broadsheet readers! A professional female volleyball league raises $35 million, Japanese writer Chizuko Ueno is reviving women's rights discussions in China, and Eventbrite's CEO is powering in-person gatherings for creators smaller than the Eras Tour.
- A new era. It's impossible for Eventbrite CEO Julia Hartz to get through an interview without being asked about Taylor Swift. As the CEO of a live events platform, Hartz is often asked to comment on rival ticketing platform Ticketmaster and the Taylor Swift ticket sales mess that led to Congressional intervention.
But, as Hartz says in the most recent episode of Fortune's podcast Leadership Next, Eventbrite is focused on powering in-person gatherings a few magnitudes smaller than the Eras Tour.
"These aren't Taylor Swift-sized creators who are putting on something that's a machine," Hartz says of the people who run events through Eventbrite. "These are local businesses and entrepreneurs that are trying to find product-market fit between their community and content they're producing."
In 2022, Eventbrite creators put on 5 million events with 284 million tickets sold in 180 countries. Ninety million people bought tickets through the platform, where the average ticket price was $40 and the average ticket fee was less than 10%.
Rather than once-in-a-lifetime special events (like the Eras Tour is for many ticket-buyers), Eventbrite events are part of everyday life. "We ticket the things that are happening during the week for you—that are happening all the time," Hartz explains.
Still, the summer of Swift (and resulting Ticketmaster criticism) offers a few lessons for rival platforms. "Getting back out to being in community with people who love the things you love...and having it be so inaccessible—it's insulting and it's injuring to consumers," Hartz says.
To help consumers, the 17-year-old platform is turning to AI. Eventbrite plans to use the technology to show consumers what events they would be interested in attending; "searching and browsing and discovering is going to be obsolete" in three years, Hartz says.
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This story was originally featured on Fortune.com