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This past weekend, the first ever Fyre Festival, a luxury getaway music festival in the Bahamas, turned out to be more like a disaster relief drill than luxury music experience. Thousands of concert goers, who all paid thousands of dollars to be there, were essentially deceived and needlessly put in harm's way. Rather than luxurious accommodations, attendees found FEMA disaster relief tents. Rather than gourmet food, bread with sliced cheese was poorly rationed out alongside relatively plain salad. Rather than plentiful top billing headlining artists entertaining the crowds, the entire festival was cancelled the morning it was set to start.
As a result of the failures of the Fyre Festival organizers (specifically Ja Rule and Billy McFarland, who co-founded the festival), a class action lawsuit has already been filed in a California federal court. The lead plaintiff spent $2,000 to attend the concert, and like thousands of others was not notified of the cancellation until he arrived.
What the Lawsuit Claims
The lawsuit alleges that the promoters and organizers of the Fyre Festival engaged in deliberate and intentional fraud by promoting an event that they did not intend to produce, or knew would not happen. Additionally, it is alleged that many celebrities and performing artists that were scheduled to appear were told not to come weeks ahead of the start of the festival. Despite others being notified, attendees that purchased tickets were apparently not notified in any way that the event would be cancelled.
The lawsuit makes some interesting claims about the festival that seem to be based upon the social media responses generated by the Fyre Festival. The actual lawsuit contains images of tweets from attendees. Some of the tweets contain damning evidence, like luggage being thrown from a shipping container at night, without much lighting. However, others are somewhat whimsical tweets, such as the one that shows attendees swimming with a wild pig.
Refunds and Reservations Available
While the lawsuit is newly filed, organizers have released a public apology and have promised refunds to all attendees. However, whether more cute than curious, in the claim form, organizers offer attendees the option to use their refund to purchase upgraded tickets to next year's Fyre Festival.