State legislators in Minnesota are about to consider a change in language to its almost year-old ticket resale legislation that would require disclosure of ticket holdbacks.
Bill HF2950, introduced this week by State Rep. Joe Atkins, is designed to help fans understand how many tickets are available for the events they want to see. For decades, holding back tickets, especially for concerts, has been the norm, but the practice has often confused fans because they don’t know how many tickets are being put on sale at a given time.
The issue of ticket holdbacks exploded in New Jersey last year following reports of thousands of Bruce Springsteen tickets being withheld from the public.
“A provider of, or initial seller of, tickets for an event or venue in connection with an event for which tickets are or will be available for purchase by the general public must disclose to prospective purchasers no later than two weeks before the event how many tickets for the event were held back from sale to the general public,” the proposed Minnesota bill states.
“‘Tickets held back from sale to the general public’ means the total number of tickets withheld from sale to the general public by or on behalf of a performer, promoter, sponsor, the venue of the performance, or any affiliate of, or person contracting with, any of them.”
Ticket brokers have long complained that they are often made the villain when popular concerts sell out quickly, but in many cases nearly half of the tickets for a specific show are being held back for various reasons, such as credit cards promotions, fan clubs, radio station giveaways, sponsors or venue clients.