Ticket resale for more than the face value of a ticket will be illegal in the Republic of Ireland by the end of July, according to media reports. The law banning for-profit ticket resale has been in the works since 2017, and is on the cusp of becoming the law of the land.
According to the legislation, those found guilty of the offense will be punished with fines of up to 100,000 euros, as well as prison sentences of up to two years. The law will apply to cultural, entertainment, and sporting events.
Music promoters have been proponents of the bill, which they claim will save consumers from seeing inflated prices for high-demand events. Instead of true market-driven secondary ticketing sites, consumers will likely be forced to industry-owned face value-capped resale marketplaces owned by promoters such as Twickets.
Politicians supporting the legislation have glommed on to this line of thinking in hopes that it will pan out.
“We have heard all too often of the experiences of genuine fans waiting patiently to buy tickets, only to miss out, and then to see those same tickets for sale on a secondary site for far more than they can afford, far more than are willing to pay, and far more than what the original value was,” says Minister of state for enterprise Robert Troy.
Economists universally argue in favor of legal ticket resale as a consumer benefit, due to the fact that promoters will not refund ticket purchase prices for those who can’t attend a show. Legislation such as what is about to go live in Ireland often actually leads to the creation of a black market for tickets, as fan complaints mount over the artist-controlled pricing of resale tickets. For example, Ed Sheeran fans complained loudly over the impossibility of selling tickets they could not use for his shows using the capped resale platform his promoters insisted upon. Those looking to move these tickets could not price them below face value, which meant that those listings couldn’t hope to compete with the face value listings.