Ticket Touting Comes Under Fire

A number of high profile organisations and managers for chart bands such as One Direction have come together to help counter the growing issue of people selling concert tickets online for a profit. Over 80 individuals representing the entertainment industry have signed a letter to The Independent asking the government to consider the fans when it comes to the sale of concert tickets.

The publication of the letter came before a Commons debate over the resale of gig tickets. Under new guidelines that are being discussed by the House of Commons, resellers would have to give more information about the tickets they are selling including whether or not reselling it is a breach of the terms and conditions.

Monday’s Commons debate came six months after some changes had already been made regarding the resale of concert tickets, but it was argued the changes had been ineffective. However, the new proposals would mean sellers would have to offer greater transparency when it comes to selling tickets including the face value of they had originally paid and where it had purchased. During the discussion it was argued that if the changes were implemented it “would not put secondary ticketing platforms out of business”, but it would help to improve consumer confidence in them.

MP Sharon Hodgsonadded:

“What we are asking for would not drive legitimate resale underground, but it might drive some illegitimate resale underground. Why would the Government and this House want to take decisions that benefited illegitimate enterprise? If that part of touting is driven underground, then it will be nowhere near as successful as it is now, given that it is able to hide behind the legitimate veneer of platforms that are supposed to be about fans selling unusable tickets to fellow fans. What we are asking for would not leave consumers who bought a ticket they can no longer use out of pocket if the event organiser does not allow refunds; there are sometimes very good reasons for many of them not doing so”.

The issue of tickets being marked up excessively and fake tickets being sold online were also discussed during the debate.

Harvey Goldsmith CBE, West End theatre operators, Lawn Tennis Association, The Rugby Football Union and managers for the Artic Monkeys and Muse were among those signing the letter that was published in The Independent calling for changes in the laws when it comes to ticket sales.

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