The Fan Freedom Project (FFP), a consumer advocacy group that promotes a free and open ticket resale market, believes a recent Ticketmaster blog post about the secondary ticket market is full of misinformation and false claims.
The Ticketmaster blog post, written by CEO Nathan Hubbard, states that the FFP is advocating legislation that would “actually make it easier for the unscrupulous scalpers to snatch up huge quantities of tickets.” Ticketmaster is preparing to launch a new initiative for artists and venues that would allow them to sell their tickets on both the Ticketmaster primary site and its secondary ticket subsidiary TicketsNow, and Hubbard wrote the post in part to position the companies as a safe alternative for ticket-buying fans.
In a post on its Web site, the FFP states that it only supports legislation that protects consumers.
“Every piece of legislation supported by the Fan Freedom Project would protect fans’ ticket ownership and purchasing rights,” the group wrote. “What’s more, these are changes that fans want. A recent national poll of ticket users found that 68% of fans want a more transparent ticket market, and 89% believe that fans own the tickets they buy. These are the very rights that Fan Freedom Project fights for.”
Ticketmaster and the FFP have been sparring publicly for months, primarily over Ticketmaster’s use of restrictive paperless tickets, which the FFP opposes.
The FFP also claims that Ticketmaster simply wants to control all aspects of ticketing, but questions whether the company has earned fans’ trust, considering it tried and failed to integrate Ticketmaster and TicketsNow in the past.
“There are so many inaccuracies in Hubbard’s post that this initial response only focuses on a few,” the FFP wrote. “But perhaps most disingenuous is that Hubbard leaves out entirely the frequency with which regular fans use resale markets to buy and sell tickets.
“Hubbard talks about the bad scalpers and untrustworthy resellers and pretends that Ticketmaster and its affiliate TicketsNow are consumers’ only friend. Meanwhile, Hubbard ignores the benefits that real fans – the majority of ticket resellers – reap from today’s secondary market.
“The real truth is, in the concert industry, only 11% of ticket resellers are professional ticket brokers. Fans sell tickets when they get sick or get stuck at work, and often they pick up sold-out tickets on the resale market when they didn’t have time to wait online (or in line) during the initial sale,” the group added.