As most of you have likely heard by now, a lot of hardcore Burners got screwed out of Burning Man tickets this year because of that whole lottery kerfuffle. Despite all the good intentions and earnest admonitions of organizers, the intractable fact of American greed has messed everything up, and lots of people are already out there scalping. Now, the New York Times is covering the story (not even the Bay Citizen), perhaps smelling the unmistakable odor of a jumping shark, mid-flight.

"It is the end of Burning Man if we don't solve this," says founding board member and spokesperson Marian Goodell. Some would argue Burning Man was already over when 50,000 people started showing up, and when every former frat boy and Marina girl learned to don fuzzy boots and bicycle the playa with the best of them. But this year is making everyone especially sad because many veteran attendees and crucial members of theme camps can't get tickets.

Anyway, 80,000 is the number of people who deluged the lottery this year, and as pretty much everyone predicted, scalpers leapt at the opportunity to scoop up whatever tickets they could via the online lottery. Tickets priced at $5,000 are already showing up on StubHub and Craigslist, and it's only February. (You'll recall that this didn't happen last year until July whenregularly priced tickets to the event sold out for the first time in its 25-year history.)

The folks at Black Rock City are planning to announce some sort of "holistic" solution to the dilemma on Wednesday, which is going to begin with getting tickets for members of big theme camps who may have to make some special application. We look forward to watching this drama continue to unfold from the dust-free safety of SFist HQ.

PREVIOUSLY: Burners Freak Out Over Another Possible Ticket Shortage