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DOJ Sues Live Nation and Ticketmaster for Inflating Concert Ticket Prices

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DOJ Sues Live Nation and Ticketmaster for Inflating Concert Ticket Prices

(CTN News) – The United States Justice Department filed a lawsuit on Thursday to dissolve Live Nation Entertainment, alleging that the major concert promoter and its Ticketmaster affiliate fraudulently raised concert ticket prices, harming artists and customers.

According to Pollstar, the average ticket price for one of the top musical tours increased to $122.84 last year from $91.86 in 2019. Some fans pay far more in the secondary market.

Here are a few reasons why tickets are so pricey.

Attorney General Merrick Garland announced the case, saying, “Ticketmaster can impose a seemingly endless list of fees on fans.” These fees include ticketing, service, convenience, platinum, price master, per-order, handling, and payment processing fees.

According to the lawsuit, the cost of seeing a live event in the United States is significantly more than in comparable places. According to a 2018 audit from the Government Accountability Office, these surcharges increased ticket costs by an average of 27%.

Delivery fees to cover postage costs, a facility charge to the venue, and a ticket processing fee can all add up.

Tickets to popular events, such as Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour or Beyonce’s Renaissance World Tour, are frequently sold in advance to members of an artist’s fan club or reserved for agents, venues, promoters, and other individuals.

Scalpers Exploit Ticketmaster’s Weaknesses

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However, the DOJ stated that Ticketmaster’s exclusivity clauses prevent artists from selling tickets directly to die-hard fans and “fan clubs” via pre-sale windows. Third companies frequently charge less than Ticketmaster.

Professional resellers buy tickets to the hottest concerts and raise prices. According to one 404 Media investigation, professional ticket purchasers create multiple accounts linked to different email addresses and credit cards and even use specialized browsers to get tickets through advance sales and evade Ticketmaster’s measures against scalpers.

According to the Justice Department’s case, Live Nation directly handles more than 400 musical acts and controls around 60% of concert promotions at large venues. It owns or operates over 265 concert venues in North America and, through Ticketmaster, controls 80% or more of primary ticketing for large-venue shows.

“In the United States, where Ticketmaster has a higher market share relative to other markets, Ticketmaster is able to charge higher prices and impose higher fees not tied to higher costs,” the Department of Justice stated.

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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