Ticketmaster is secretly hiring 'scalpers' to resell tickets at a higher price

Live event fans displeased with pricey resale tickets from Ticketmaster may be annoyed to learn that the online ticketing service has a secret reseller program which is responsible for the inflated ticket prices. Based on an investigation conducted by CBC News and Toronto Star, it was found that Ticketmaster operates a clandestine scheme in which it recruits professional resellers called scalpers to resell event tickets at a higher cost, with additional fees that go to Ticketmaster itself.

Two journalists from both outlets went undercover to Ticket Summit 2018 in July and posed as scalpers as part of Ticketmaster's professional reseller program. Ticketmaster, owned by American entertainment company Live Nation, enlists scalpers to get batches of tickets from its website using bots. After that, the scalpers resell them for higher rates through a web-based inventory management platform referred to as TradeDesk.

The undercover journalists have learned that in spite of the presence of a Ticketmaster ‘buyer abuse’ division that looks for dubious ticket sale activities on the site, the company excludes the TradeDesk system from its policing efforts.

Concerning the secret reseller program, Ticketmaster issued the following statement:

As the world’s leading ticketing platform, representing thousands of teams, artists and venues, we believe it is our job to offer a marketplace that provides a safe and fair place for fans to shop, buy and sell tickets in both the primary and secondary markets.

One of the presenters at the event also told the reporters that Ticketmaster does not care if the scalpers use botnets and fake accounts to obtain tickets from the site and bypass its buying limits.

Source and image: CBC

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