On July 10, at approximately 7:35pm, I logged on via link that would allow me to access Mandopop singer JJ Lin's virtual concert, Sanctuary Finale.
No technological hitches here, except I had to surrender my personal details to Sistic by creating an account to watch Lin. Fair enough.
Tickets were going from S$38 to S$188, but I'm sitting in for free thanks to a media invite from JFJ Productions.
Because I'm great at procrastinating, I didn't check out the electronic wristband that was mailed to me earlier this week and only found out 15 minutes before the concert that it needed batteries... which I didn't have a ready stock of.
The bluetooth-enabled band would enable me interact with Lin in real time, according to JFJ.
Never mind, I'll have to do without that ~connection~. Portent of things to come :(
ALSO, I missed the first three minutes of the concert (and thus Lin's entrance), which means Lin was already husky and all in the middle of a song, which segued into an old favourite — 编号89757 (Number 89757).
Then it froze a bit here.
And a bit there.
And I got the black screen of death.
A quick check online shows that a sea of viewers from multiple countries were facing the same problem.
Refreshing the screen helped (for a few seconds), until it didn't.
At 8:35pm, I got quite excited as Lin's voice finally jumped through hoops to reach my earphones.
This was how it went:
Fans who paid for their tickets were understandably incensed — but not at Lin.
Instead, the anger was directed at Sistic, who they felt had let the singer's efforts go down the drain.
Past 9pm, the situation appears to have improved, with Lin singing a couple of songs without any hindrance.
Sistic apologised on its Facebook page at 9:10pm, citing "technical difficulties" for the connection issues.
The organiser also assured fans that they would be able to view the concert in full, somehow (the livestreamed video was not meant to be re-playable).
Lin addresses the issue live
Just as I was about to log off at 9:30pm, Lin appeared on the screen once more in an earnest close-up, thanking all parties who were involved in the making of the concert — including Sistic.
The singer said that news of the severe lag had reached him, and promised viewers that he would communicate with Sistic regarding a compensation (that is not necessarily monetary, from what I could gather).
Lin added that it was a "pity" that viewers had to experience such a disruption.
And... my screen hung. Ah well.
P.s. The stream later resumed, but not without pauses.
Top image via JJ Lin's Sanctuary Finale video