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Fan Freedom Asks Ticketmaster, Paciolan and Veritix to Help End the Use of Abusive Ticketing Software
Today, the Fan Freedom Project, in partnership with the National Consumers League and Consumer Action, sent a letter to the CEOs of three leading ticket companies, Ticketmaster, Paciolan and Veritix, inviting them to join forces to combat “bots” – abusive ticketing software used by unscrupulous ticket resellers to cut the line and cheat consumers.
Bots have long been a bogeyman of the ticket industry. Just in the last year, bots were cited as culprits in a number of high-profile sell-outs, including LCD Soundsystem’s farewell tour at Madison Square Garden, and more recently, tour dates for Bruce Springsteen and Red Hot Chili Peppers.
When asked about problems surrounding the Springsteen and Chili Peppers sales, a Ticketmaster spokesperson stated, “What we experienced today was a highly suspicious source of traffic” – bots.
Despite this recurring problem, the ticket industry has yet to offer a comprehensive solution that actually puts face-value tickets in the hands of regular fans.
The Fan Freedom Project has long opposed the use of bots, and our letter outlined a number of concrete ideas to eradicate their use.
- That all resale exchanges include in their Seller Terms of Service: A) an explicit prohibition against reselling tickets that have been obtained with bots; B) a requirement that resellers permit anti-bot audits by exchanges when the reseller posts for sale more than 30 tickets to an event within 24 hours of the public onsale; and C) a requirement that resellers cooperate with government inquiries of alleged bot purchases.
- That we jointly request that the Federal Trade Commission and National Association of Attorneys General create a federal or multi-state task force to investigate the purchase of tickets using bots, and that we agree to voluntarily cooperate in that Task Force’s deliberations.
- That we jointly promote and support anti-bot legislation in the states that do not already have legislation on the books, and that such legislation include authority and cooperation for multi-state investigations by the relevant enforcement agencies.
- That we jointly promote the creation of an industry-wide confidential data service to measure bot usage.
In order to truly stop the bots, we need industry-wide action and collaboration. Our letter to Ticketmaster, Paciolan and Veritix asks for their leadership on this issue; you can read it below. Only working together will we safeguard fans’ right to fair access to face-value tickets and restore faith in the ticket industry. We hope these gentlemen accept our offer.