New Senate bill would push ticket sellers to disclose fees up front


Pricing starts at: $25 Whether you have a brother who enjoys a live football game or a wife who adores Michael Bublé, places like SubHub and Ticketmaster offer gift certificates that are perfect for bringing someone to a show . You also have the option of purchasing tickets online which can be printed directly from your computer or wireless device. Why not buy an extra ticket and share the experience of a live show? It could be a gift that you will even remember.

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WASHINGTON — Swifties, BeyHive and Cure fans may have reason to cheer: Senators are expected to introduce a bipartisan bill on Wednesday targeting hidden ticket fees for live events.

Dubbed the Key Events Ticketing Fee Transparency Act (TICKET), the measure would require ticketing merchants to disclose in advance the total price of tickets, including fees, for concerts, sporting and other events. large gatherings.

THE new invoice follows the reintroduction of Unwanted Charges Prevention Act in the House earlier this month by Representatives Ruben Gallego, D-Arizona, and Jeff Jackson, DN.C., and the Biden administration’s moves to push fee transparency.

It also comes as lawmakers wage a wider battle against ticket sellers. In December, Taylor Swift fans sued Live Nation after its Ticketmaster site crashed during pre-sales of the artist’s “The Eras Tour.” The fiasco prompted the Senate Judiciary Committee to examine the entertainment conglomerate’s power over the industry at a hearing in January. At the time, some Capitol Hill critics called Live Nation a monopoly.

Ticketmaster is also committed to return money to fans who bought tickets for gothic rock band The Cure’s ‘Shows Of A Lost World Tour’ earlier this year after bandleader Robert Smith slammed the prices. The ticket seller offered up to $10 refunded to verified fan accounts after agreeing with the band that many of the fees charged during transactions were “unduly high,” Smith tweeted on March 16.

The new bill is co-sponsored by Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., chair of the House Commerce Committee, and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

“The price they say should be the price you pay. This bill is part of comprehensive legislation that I plan to introduce to curb misleading fraudulent charges that drive up costs for consumers,” said Cantwell in a statement.

In his statement, Cruz said, “The TICKET Act brings transparency to the entire ticketing industry, which is dominated by a few large players who can capitalize on these hidden fees.”

Ticket fees can amount to 21% to 58% of the total cost of tickets, according to a statement from the committee. The bill aims to promote competition “by providing ticketing fees and speculative ticket transparency for the benefit of all consumers,” the commission said.

If passed, primary and secondary market ticket sellers — such as Ticketmaster and Live Nation-owned SeatGeek — would be required to disclose the full ticket price, including itemized fees, at the start of a transaction and before ticket selection. The total ticket price should also be clearly displayed when marketing the event.

Secondary market sellers would be obligated to fully disclose the note’s speculative status, meaning the seller does not have actual possession of the note.

President Joe Biden highlighted the administration’s efforts to crack down on junk fees during his State of the Union address in February. In addition to other areas, he called for action against excessive fees for concerts, sporting events and other forms of entertainment. The senses. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Sheldon Whitehouse, DR.I., presented the Senate Companion Bill to Biden’s plan in March.

Along with the administration’s goals, the Federal Trade Commission has also issued a rule-making procedure November 8, 2022 – the day of the midterm elections – to investigate unfair acts or practices related to ticketing and other miscellaneous fees.

Ticketmaster said it does not control fees but retains a portion of operating costs, according to a Feb. 7 report. blog post. The provider also said it already supports “all-inclusive” pricing in New York State and is advocating for adoption of the policy nationwide.

“We continue to advocate for an industry-wide up-front pricing mandate, so fans see the full face value and cost of fees up front. This only works if all markets of ticketing go together so that consumers really have accurate comparisons when buying tickets,” Ticketmaster said in the blog post.

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