Can the Internet break the giant’s grip on music and sporting events?

In the 1990s, grunge rockers Pearl Jam famously challenged Ticketmaster (IACI ), claiming the giant was a monopoly. The group eventually lost the battle, leaving Ticketmaster in a more dominant position. . .

Now, Internet technology is doing what the nation’s once-hottest rock band couldn’t: loosening Ticketmaster’s tight grip on the lucrative live concert and sporting event scene. The Net is shaking up the ticketing market by giving artists and venues a way to sell tickets directly to fans. And it is fueling the rise of a resale market by giving buyers and sellers a safe place to connect with one another more easily and cheaply.

As the rules of the game change, talent and event managers sense a chance to seize back some control. Sports teams are trying to assert more say over the way tickets are sold. And venues and concert promoters are rethinking their relationships with ticket sellers. Industry veterans expect Live Nation Inc. (LYV )—the biggest concert promoter, providing an estimated 16% of Ticketmaster’s business—to ramp up its own ticket service now that talks with Ticketmaster have broken down. (Full Story)

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