Looking to keep pressure on state and federal legislators, the consumer advocacy group Fan Freedom Project (FFP) is gathering online signatures on a new “Fan Bill of Rights” that details some of the issues surrounding pending ticket resale legislation.
The effort has a Facebook page, where fans are asked to leave their signature. “By signing, you’re standing up for your rights as fans and helping to ensure that when you buy tickets in the future, they will remain your tickets – no strings attached,” the page states.
Signees are pledging their allegiance in support of three central issues in the group’s fight for an open and free market for event tickets:
1. Our tickets are our property. We buy them; we own them.
2. We have the right to sell or share our tickets – with friends, family, or anyone else – in any way we choose and at any price we choose.
3. We have the right to know how many tickets are available to the public, and how many are held back for VIPs and other special customers.
All three issues have been raised during the debate over ticket resale legislation, with the last one concerning ticket holdbacks garnering some of the most controversy. The practice of holding back an undisclosed number of tickets is something that promoters, artists and venues routinely do but do not like to openly discuss.
How many signatures the group hopes to gather on the Fan Bill of Rights, and exactly how those signatures will be used, has not yet been disclosed. FFP President Jon Potter did not return messages seeking comment. The group was launched in February, with some financial backing from ticket resale marketplace StubHub.
Currently, legislators in Minnesota and North Carolina are discussing proposed ticket resale bills that keep the market free and open, and that prohibit the use of restrictive paperless tickets that are nontransferable. A similar bill is also under consideration at the federal level. FFP recently had street teams outside of a Minnesota Twins home game and college hockey’s Frozen Four handing out t-shirts and stickers as part of a fan education program.
The Fan Bill of Rights initiative comes one day after the withdrawal of proposed ticket resale legislation in Connecticut, where FFP and ticket resellers were supporting the bill over the objection of venue operators.