The International Ticketing Association (INTIX) revealed the establishment of the “INTIX Member COVID-19 Relief Fund” this week.
The fund, created in partnership with the INTIX Board of Directors and Stewardship Circle, will benefit ticketing professionals who are INTIX members by providing a one-time USD$100 assistance award. Any member can request the award, and there will be no judgement or proof of assistance required. Maureen Andersen, INTIX CEO, said that the fund will kick-off by seeking donations across the live event industry.
Right now, thousands of ticketing professionals are out of work, and the live event industry as a whole has taken a huge hit amid the pandemic; a new report from Pollstar shows that the industry could be down up to $9 billion in revenue this year. In a statement to TicketNews, Andersen said that while many ticketing professionals are working, it’s still “challenging on many levels,” as those working full-time have to handle complaints and manage customer expectations, while processing event cancellations and refunds.
Additionally, she noted that a vast majority of the ticketing workforce has been devastated due to layoffs, with some employees furloughed with no idea when the industry will return back to normal. That’s where the fund came into place. Andersen said that the idea to implement the fund was simple, as “no one else was helping our folks” and there were no real “safety nets” in place for ticketing professionals.
“There are lots of funds, fundraisers, lobbying and efforts to help displaced folks in the entertainment industry and that is terrific and necessary; I cheer them on and donate to them myself,” she said. “However, even though ticketing professionals and ticketing technology are an absolutely intrinsic, integral and vitally important component to the entertainment ecosystem – it doesn’t happen without them! – they aren’t included as part of the funds or lobbying efforts that are limited to the artistic side of the business or even the crew or production side now. As the Association for entertainment ticketing professionals, we had no choice but to step up and in to help our own in whatever way we can.”
The relief fund will help INTIX members with whatever they need; whether that be help with bills, groceries, or medicine. Andersen said the fund will impact members “spiritually, emotionally and professionally.”
“It will tell our displaced members that we see them; that we, as an industry, recognize their value; that they matter; that someone cares; and that their colleagues are here to help them,” Andersen said. “Economically it will help them bridge a gap when they may need it.”
Andersen explained that she hopes the “no-strings-attached assistance award” will help raise enough funding to assist anyone who asks and potentially even help members more than once. She called the fund “the right, human and kind thing to do.”
She noted that donations will be accepted “beyond just the ticketing community,” and would extend the donation request to “anyone who has ever bought a ticket.”
“Many of our members, our Board of Directors and myself are extending this donation request to our personal circles,” Andersen said. “We are the folks who make magic come true for endless fans around the world. The ones that move mountains to help you get the tickets to make your dreams a reality – like seeing Hamilton or your favorite band, fixing issues when you bought tickets for the wrong day, plus endless other requests.
“If you can remember even one time that a ticketing professional helped you, and we will again, please help them out now. We are a tight knit tribe who are the “magic behind the [buy] button” and we make all of this work, even though you might not see us working tirelessly behind the scenes. Help now because it’s the right thing to do. We want ticketing professionals to remain strong as we’ll need them even more than ever standing up to help fans, customers and patrons when we get to re-open our doors and gates again.”
As the fund grows, INTIX will open applications for members; it will be a simple process, only requiring basic information from the requesting member so that INTIX can process awards and track the granted funds. Refunds will be processed in order of receipt. The fund will be administered by INTIX, a registered 501(c)3 non-profit membership association.