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How much should a Tea Ticket cost?

Posted by Daniel Clough on

Recently, I have had a few friends complain about the rising cost of our ticketed events. 

I get it.

Life is expensive in the modern world. Especially in the major centers of the empire. Every dollar counts, and if you spend $15 or $35 on entertainment than you can't spend that money on other things. Money is the cost of civilization. If you are going to live in San Francisco it isn't going to be "cheap". If something is cheap you will find that an attitude of gratefulness will serve you better over the long run than an attitude of privilege.
I am sure you are already aware of this. 

Some people have arrived at an event that they had not been to for months and found that the door cost was more expensive than months prior.
I am sorry that you were caught unaware.
Door volunteers know about this problem. If you tell them that you didn't know about the price increase they can give you the old price once and explain that paying online reduces work for Immodestea and that you can still get cheaper tickets online. At the same time, we can't have people haggling at the door. We already have had people trying to sneak into events for free by lying about whatever... It's annoying. 

My hope is that we will not sell any door tickets to events in the near future.

The price of door tickets will go up one more time for events that have door tickets (in order to discourage door sales), but many future events will not offer ticket sales on premises at all. This acts as a system of RSVP and allows the website to track all of our financial information for taxes and receipts for what ever contractual obligations we may have around ticket costs or event revenue. 

That's the Short Version.

  • Ticket prices are going up. 
  • There are still cheap and volunteer tickets available for every event. 

Get your tickets early or contact us about participating more!

Long Version: Thinking about rent.
The most important reason for ticket price increase was that when we left the Red Victorian for the Mango Dome we had to start paying this pesky thing called rent, or at least have to support the Mango Dome in paying rent by paying for use of the space.
We paid the Red Victorian for the first few events before they blessedly decided that the economic input was not worth the ethical awkwardness of a business charging people to enter their community space. 
I completely respect that position, and feel eternally grateful for their allowing us to continue charging small amounts of money which helped pay for Stephen's food and rent. <3

Unfortunately, one can not expect to use community space in order to make private money for long. After a solid three months of collaboration and expansion for both the Red Victorian and ourselves we had our financial feet under us and we were gently released into the wilds of SF with a young healthy baby event. 

The Mango Dome has been awesome! 
I met Ellis a few years back when I took photos for a porn opening party he had at an undisclosed location. Great party!

Our vision fits in perfectly with the vision of the Mango Dome as I understand it. We create safe spaces for all kinds of things other than just kink and sex positive culture, but sex is an undeniable part of life, and probably the least safe sphere of human interaction, so it's an obvious match to our project which aims to touch on all aspects of life.

Unfortunately the Mango Dome is a fair bit smaller than the Red Victorian, and 30ish people in the two spaces feels different. 
Because we have a lower cap and a higher rate of attendance compared to 6 months ago when we started, we had to raise prices in order to maintain the comfortable vibe.
It's True. We could have limited tickets without raising ticket cost, but that would be silly. Since Stephen joined Immodestea at roughly the same time we started Shibari and Tea  ALL of Immodestea's profit have covered only MOST of Stephen's expenses - MOST months - and ZERO profit has been realized by Daniel so far in this multi year project. 

We are hoping that this project can become not only full time, but also support our lives in the way which a full time job should support one's life. We understand that building any business takes time and capital, and the less capital one has the more time it takes.
I am not complaining.
I have had tech worker friends, usually making six figures, complains about ticket prices going because they are taking voluntary time off of work - along with some drunken rhetoric about socialism...
I am only interested in real solutions to real problems. I have offered a solution, plan your social activities ahead of time and buy early bird tickets for the same price you have been buying tickets from day one!

I'm not excited about listening to people complain while parties and festivals... I will because I love you... Maybe complaining at social events is the only way these friends will learn whatever perspective will be required for them not to go to parties and unload all of their lifes problems... (we are going to be hosting support groups soon, so that you have an intentional place to go and complain to friends. Because we really do love you despite your complaining.)
Starting off at the top of the economy at such a young ages maybe has engendered a lot of privileged bullshit. No offense intended. It's hard to be polite and controversial at the same time.


When the Mango Dome looses it's lease in November we hope that we will be able to move into a nicer space in partnership with the Mango Dome, but regardless, unless the space allows for more attendees at a similar cost per square foot - rent related costs may go up again. Costs are almost certainly not going to go down.

High rent is a reality of San Francisco.
This is the reason that the first Immodestea Lounge will probably be elsewhere, as sad as that is to think about...

We Love You!
And, there is no reason for you to ever pay more than you can afford to come to our events!

We have enough "Early Bird" tickets to cover all of the regular attendees who have been with us since tickets were $15! 
("Regular attendee" is someone who comes once a monthish, as people who come to most every event usually volunteer.) 

Then we have the "discount tickets."
Last week I changed the ratio of "discount tickets" to "standard tickets" so that there are less discount tickets to standard tickets for the first time!
We were going to sell out of standard tickets before discount tickets - and that would be silly. It is also clear evidence that people value the event at the cost which I have set (or higher), and so I feel very comfortable at the current "Standard Ticket" cost of $35 for Shibari and Tea.
It's a fucking awesome event.
Socially comfortable kink... just wow.

What I'm trying to say here is that we will accommodate anyone in our community who wants to participate. Just get a hold of us before the event and explain your situation and we can make sure that you can share and receive into the community in ways which will make everyone feel respected for what they have to offer and leave no one feeling underappreciated or abused.

Use Your Words!

Reach out to us and communicate your needs and how you wish to share!


Thanks to our beautiful Models!
Louisa Laroche, Connor Bennette, Stephen Tranovich, and Fonda Tong

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1 comment

  • Liz Mat on

    hello, friends, and thank you for this heartfelt blog post. It is a difficult thing to balance community and capitalism, and I have been frustrated before when I reach the “paywall” to spaces where I feel, by social contract, that I should be allowed to be. It is so hard to feel that the way into a community is “pay-to-play,” it can make you feel like an outsider or like a sucker. I am very prone to distrusting events that I read as preying on others’ need for community, spiritual connection, or intimacy.

    But of course it does take money and work to create the kinds of events that the two of you have proctored, and those events are now a part of the landscape of San Francisco. Immodestea events are incredibly safe spaces that offer refuge and education to the kink, queer, and conscious communities in San Francisco, and I feel lucky to have stumbled upon them.

    By sharing the effort you are putting into starting this fledgling company, and sharing the reasons why the price point sits where it does, and sharing vulnerably the desire to have this work be the work that supports you, Immodestea is taking great strides towards breaking down that awkward paradigm between buyer and seller, between communitea and host. Especially paired with the fact that there is ample opportunity to get involved and trade labor for entry, or trade planning ahead for a discounted ticket. That makes it possible for everyone to come to the table and participate in the party. And leaves you, as hosts, less vulnerable to an informal sliding-scale, where “pay what you can” often turns into “pay how you value our time and effort.”

    It feels really different to throw $35 bucks to friends that are throwing themselves into the work that they do to try to get off the ground than to throw $35 bucks to an anonymous company run by homies that have so much more than you might.

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