The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games watched unhappily as their online ticketing system for the games crashed shortly after tickets went on sale to the general public. BOCOG's ticketing site received 8 million page views during the first hour of ticket sales on October 30, with an average of 200,000 ticket requests hitting the system every minute. In addition, more than 3.8 million telephone calls flooded the sales hotline as fans tried to book tickets for the games. "Because of the overwhelming volume of page visits, the technical system was unable to perform the tasks well enough, and many applicants were unable to successfully submit their applications," said BOCOG.
After two hours of operating, only 9,000 tickets had been sold and eventually the ticketing system was taken offline for several hours in the afternoon. After IT staff reconfigured the system, it was brought back online at 5 p.m, only to be finally taken offline at 6 p.m., by which a total of 43,000 tickets had been sold (90% of which had been sold online). At a press conference Wednesday, BOCOG officials said the ticketing system had been designed to handle a mere 1 million visits per hour and 150,000 ticket requests per minute. The ticketing system simply could not cope, they said, promising to announce a revamped ticketing plan November 5.