HENRY DILTZ, AFP/Getty Images When Rhode Island's Newport Jazz Festival…
- Posted on Mar 2nd 2011 12:00PM by Jason MacNeil
Sandra Mu, Getty Images
In a letter written by "The Fans" titled 'The Fanclub Is a Cannibal -- U2.com, Fans Need More,' and published last week on Petitionspot.com, fans addressed six main problems, including customer service issues such as orders being canceled or delayed, as well as "generic and uninformative" responses when fans inquired about the former.
The letter also states how band news is often found hours "and at worst several weeks behind fan sites such as U2gigs and @U2."
Another complaint concerns exclusive albums offered and how the "quality of these releases has taken a nosedive," including the latest compilation, 'U2: Duals.' "The upcoming release of U2: Duals has crossed the line," the letter says before adding how nine of the tracks are directly available on iTunes. "This has pushed us to the breaking point. To put songs from studio albums on a fan club release is quite frankly ridiculous and almost insulting."
It seems that the two main issues concern concert presales and the value fans get from the $50 membership. Previously, fans paying for U2.com membership often got first chance at concert tickets but that no longer happens due to sports teams and "certain credit cards" often offering the same opportunity.
Regarding the value, fans say that aside from posts like 'Willie's Diary' there is very little value offered. "REM subscription is $12 and members receive actual unreleased tracks," the letter says. Pearl Jam -- whose fan club membership is $40 -- are also cited for giving streaming radio access, a magazine, free tracks available for download and vinyl, t-shirts and a coupon enabling fans "to download a free 'bootleg' Pearl Jam concert of their choice."
"We know how much Bono, the Edge, Adam, and Larry care about their fans," the letter says near the end, adding how Larry Mullen Jr. took time to resolve the "ticket debacle" at the beginning of the 'Vertigo' tour.
"Bono once thanked us all for supporting the band through the early years, and for 'giving us 500 Pounds each day,'" the letter concludes. "We will all be more than happy to continue doing so; we'd just like to get some value from that money, so that we can say that we continue to have a special and intimate relationship with U2."
U2 has made no statement regarding the petition. The band -- who released 'No Line On the Horizon' in 2009 -- recently announced they will headline the Friday night slot at this year's Glastonbury Festival. The group's '360° Tour' continues in South America later this month before an extensive North American leg begins May 21 in Denver.