Want a ticket to the Michael Jackson memorial on Tuesday? Log on, enter your name and hope for the best. Everybody else will have to watch it on television or on their computer screens.
Organizers of the event at the Staples Center in Los Angeles are giving out 17,500 free tickets to randomly selected fans who register on the venue's Web site
, officials said Friday at a news conference.
Those who can't get the precious tickets – 11,000 in the Staples Center and another 6,500 to watch on big screens at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live across the street – can watch a live worldwide television feed being provided free to networks or on streaming video on the Web.
Organizers are using a wristband system to crack down on scalpers.
"This is a memorial. I'm hoping that people have dignity. We're doing our best to accommodate the worldwide demand," said Tim Leiweke, president and CEO of AEG, which owns the Staples Center. "For those who would try to take advantage of this, shame on them."
No details of the memorial were released, except that there will be no funeral procession. "It is still being developed," said Jackson family spokesman Ken Sunshine. He added: "Everything about the memorial has to do with accommodating as many fans as possible. ... It is all about the fans."
Jan Perry, a Los Angeles city councilwoman, said fans who do not get tickets "might want to consider watching this from the comfort of your own home." The ceremony will not be shown outside the venue on any of the jumbo screens.
The registration for tickets will end at 6 p.m. Saturday, when 8,750 names are drawn randomly for two tickets each to either the Staples Center or Nokia Theatre. Those getting tickets will be notified on Sunday between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. with instructions on picking up tickets and wristbands.