Flash click-to-play on Chrome breaks Ticketmaster

I have been following my own Defensive Computing advice for a while now, and using the Chrome browser configured to "Let me chose when to run plugin content." In other words, Flash does not run by default when a page loads, I have to manually click on Flash content that I want to see.

This worked fine for quite a while, until I tried to buy tickets to a Ticketmaster event. The image below shows how far I got.


There was nothing to get ready for. The website hung at that point.

This first happened on a Chromebook, so I moved to a Windows 7 machine. Same thing.

The event was a show, and at first I thought the show had closed and its website had just been abandoned. But a few days later I found myself at the location of the show and it had not closed. I asked the people selling tickets if they knew about any problems with the Ticketmaster website. They did not.

Eventually, somehow, it occurred to me that click-to-play might be the problem and, sure enough, it is. Having realized that, I tried Chrome on OS X Yosemite. With click-to-play enabled, it hung there too.  

This seems to be just a Chrome thing, the Tickemaster site works with Firefox configured to "Ask to Activate" Flash. As a rule, however, I keep Flash away from Firefox.

I have to assume that not many Chrome users have enabled click-to-play. If they had, this would have been detected and fixed long ago. There is nothing in the Ticketmaster FAQ about either Flash or Chrome.

Security and convenience will always be at odds with each other.


Update: August 20, 2015: A reader reported the same problem at Lumosity.com. He dealt with it by setting an exception in the plugin controls for Lumosity. 

Update: August 22, 2015. I contacted Ticketmaster and pointed them to this article. In response they said "Please use Ticketmaster.com and not the link to access the website." Beats me what the heck that means, other than the fact that the problem will not be fixed. 

Update: August 25, 2015. Good news. Ticketmaster has now documented this issue. Anyone that clicks on Help on the Ticketmaster site and searches for Flash or Chrome will now find an explanation of the problem called Why isn't my interactive seat map working? The problem still exists, but according to a new blog they posted on August 24th, they are looking into Flash alternatives. 

Update: September 11, 2015. The problem seems to have been fixed. Rather than hanging forever, the Ticketmaster website eventually times out and you will see a normal Flash placeholder (looks like a puzzle piece). Right clicking on the placeholder proceeds normally. 


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