I know I’m probably the last person to preach about cameras but what I can tell you for sure is that an Olympus Pen EPL-2 is NOT a DSLR.
So as most of you already know, I went to catch a Paramore concert in Jakarta two weeks back. I wish the concert is the main highlight of a happy blog post.
But circumstance played a cruel trick on me. So because of that, this blog post is going to be a bitch fest slash open letter to the concert organizers. Seriously, I was disappointed at what happened at the concert venue. You must have seen my angry tweets about what happened and my facebook status saying that the organizers made me cry but I didn’t elaborate on it.
So here goes:
When I bought was doing some research on the concert ticket prices and venue 3 months ago, I sent an email to Showmaxx Entertainment asking them if cameras are allowed in the concert venue.
They replied with, “Only pocket or handphone camera allowed, hi quality cam is forbid” (excuse the English).
So FP and I were like, ok so we certainly can’t bring a DSLR inside but my Olympus Pen 2 could certainly get in, as it is a digital camera and definitely not even close to a DSLR or a professional camera.
Even though some might say it is a level above an average pocket digital camera, but I digress.
(This is where the lines are somewhat blurred, but it is still no excuse of what happened at the venue).
So we flew to Jakarta early morning on the day of the concert.
Collected the tickets, survived crazy Jakarta traffic, arrived at the hotel too early for check-in, finally checked-in, took a long nap, had dinner, got ready for the concert (feeling super hyper and excited by this time), set off to the venue…
I WASN’T ALLOWED IN.
It was just after having this photo of me taken, so I hung my camera around my neck. Found out later it didn’t really make a difference if it was around my neck or in my bag.
Let me put a disclaimer first because the next portion of this blog post might turn out violent.
1) I am not one to purposely rebel against rules.
2) If things were handled nicely and tactfully by the people manning the entrance, I would not have been so so angry till today.
3) I do not get angry over just NOTHING – it takes a lot of energy to be angry so when I am, it better be worth something to be mad about.
4) I brought my camera along to the concert because I was told any camera that is not high quality / professional ie a DSLR is allowed, and also because I was a tourist and need to have it with me at all times. Also, it is not to specifically take videos/photos of the concert.
So guy 1 at the entrance stopped me from entering. I can’t recall what he said but it was in a dismissive tone telling me I can’t get in because of my camera. To which, I told him, “It is not a DSLR”.
He gave me a distrusting fucked up face and called Guy 2 over to take a look at my camera. Guy 2 mulled over it and passed my camera to Guy 3. It went on to 2-3 more people.
THIS I DO NOT LIKE.
It may be because I’m anal and posessive about my things or that I just did not like the sight of their faces. That’s my camera you’re passing around while I stood there. I told you that it is not a DSLR (which it is not), and yet you looked at me like I was the scum of the earth trying to sneak in.
And I had to keep repeating my sentence both in English and mixed-up Indonesian, with increasing aggravation – that it is not a fucking DLSR camera.
I do not like being treated that way.
So all 5 idiots came back with the same answer. Mainly because of the lens but that wasn’t a long lens. It could barely zoom, for god’s sake. And the point is, it is not a professional camera. Not even close to being semi-professional in my hands.
Ok so we tried another way. We told them that we travelled from Singapore just for this concert and there’s no way we can miss it over a camera issue, which is by right non-existent. And that we have emailed them even before we got the tickets.
You know there’s such a thing as a “case-to-case” basis? It doesn’t exist in these entrance people’s heads. They keep saying, “No you can’t enter” and “this camera cannot” – things like that. Without even giving a SOLUTION.
Oh wait they did. One of them told us, “give me your camera. I’ll keep it for you till the end of the concert” – ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME? I DO NOT TRUST YOUR FACES EVEN WHEN YOU ARE PASSING MY CAMERA AROUND LIKE A WORTHLESS STONE IN FRONT OF ME. WHAT MAKES YOU THINK I’LL LET YOU TAKE MY CAMERA OUT OF MY SIGHT?
NO WAY. YOU’LL PROBABLY MAKE A FORTUNE OUT OF IT.
The next “solution” they gave was: to put it back in the car. What the fuck. I wasn’t there with my Jakarta friends who have cars. In fact I was with one who doesn’t have her own transport. And the three of us took a cab from our hotel to the concert venue. So no, we don’t have a car to deposit the camera to. So we did not have a choice.
I pleaded once more with Guy 1, quite unbelieving what was happening. If I were to follow my instincts, I would have just made a dash through the entrance. But there were police all around.
And while I was pleading, I saw a guy with a NIKON DSLR camera breezing through the entrance checks. I LOST IT.
I SCREAMED, “THAT IS A DSLR. THIS IS *NOT* A DSLR”.
I mean, how fucking unfair was that. That camera was a clear DSLR and he breezed through, while I got stared down like a common criminal by brainless imbeciles who are also inflexible.
The guy got stopped and called out. But at least he had a car to put his camera in.
Sorry dude, fair’s fair and I was just really too pissed off.
So me, Sannia and FP were at quite a loss of what to do. I mean seriously. Then somehow there was a girl at the entrance. I think she was one of the people the camera got passed to earlier. I literally begged Sannia to speak to her and explained things one more time so that we can go in.
So Sannia did, and in Indonesian, she explained that I’ve travelled far just for this concert and could she just let us in. And that the camera is not a DSLR. And that we have emailed them months ago about this issue.
And the girl’s response (in Indonesian mind you. Perhaps she thought I wouldn’t understand):
“I do not care where she’s from. She’s not going in with that camera no matter what”.
Like seriously. SERIOUSLY.
I took a second to digest this. I felt so angry at the unfairness of it all. So frustrated because nobody was listening to me. So crushed that I might miss watching the concert I had travelled for. The crux of this whole trip. And I was just outside. So close yet so far.
These thoughts ran through my mind and I just started to cry. I didn’t even think I’d shed a tear, but I was really frustrated by the situation and upset.
When the girl saw me cry, she turned to the other idiots saying something like, “Eh, she’s crying. Quite pitiful. How? How?” And then came back with still a NO.
And it’s funny how only after I cried that they came up with solution #3 which actually makes sense: To deposit the camera at the ticket box.
Why couldn’t you have told us earlier? It would have saved so much time. We did ask you if there’s anywhere we can put our things other than the dodgey guy. But you said there wasn’t anywhere. Why must you put me through that ordeal? Why must you wait till I broke down?
Best part was they didn’t even direct us to the “ticket box”. They just told us that it’s one of the white tents in the area. There were MANY white tents, assholes. The least you could do was show us the way to the ticket box. After such a horrendous welcome and making me cry.
WHAT THE FUCK, SERIOUSLY.
But anyway, we found the ticket box somehow and I was still crying during the walk there. Assholes, really. That’s all I can say about them.
We deposited the camera, with my camera bag (thank god we left all other valuables in the hotel room) only after getting the name and phone number of the girl taking care of it. The people at the ticket box asked what happened. I explained to them again what happened especially the fact that we had settled this issue over email long ago. But of course, no go is a no go.
Fine then. Looking back, I wouldn’t have used my camera during my concert anyway. It was too crowded and I just wanted to enjoy the show without distractions. What I wanted was just to have my camera with me. Though we did see some DSLR cameras amongst the audience once we got in.
By that time, I was too numb to feel anything.
When I got back, I looked up some fan cams / videos from the concert. Can you believe my shock when I saw some really, really high definition videos that can only be captured by a DSLR camera? Check these out:
I mean, really Showmaxx? REALLY? You gave me such a hard time over my non-DSLR camera, MADE ME CRY only for me to find these videos taken by PROFESSIONAL CAMERAS?
WHAT THE FUCK?
Is this the impression you want to leave with customers who travelled far to catch a concert that you organized? I really wish I have nice things to say about you so that my friends here in Singapore will know who to look for if they want to attend a concert in Jakarta.
But because you weren’t the least bit sorry about what happened and that you were not at all fair to me (and my situation), and the fact that other people did manage to go through with their professional cameras while I get probed like a criminal – I say FUCK YOU.
You probably didn’t see the big picture. I’m not an Indonesian and I can carry this story outside of Indonesia. And I have. So now everybody will know how fucked up you really are. The least you could do was be flexible. Really. Or if you can’t do that, give us proper solutions.
Would it have helped if we paid you off? Is that how things work in Jakarta? Was that how the other people managed to smuggle their cameras in?
And you know what, even when I was collecting my camera from the ticket box, I had to ask for a free poster (which was being given out). NO fucking initiative to appease me.
You have just really, just really seriously fucked up by messing me up. This will bring a bad name to all concert organizers in Indonesia to the people outside of Indonesia. And you know what? I’ll never attend a concert there ever again. Hope you are satisfied.
To everybody who’s reading this, please spread the word about how fucked up Showmaxx Entertainment is.