The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011


Ticket ToutsNot happy with pegging concert ticket prices at ever increasing prices, some of the biggest names in the music industry now want to now get a slice of profits made on tickets resold on the web. They are proposing that a 'Resale Rights Society' (RRS) is established that will slap a levy on the sale price of every ticket resold on sites like eBay.

Apparently Radiohead, Robbie Williams and Arctic Monkeys are among the 400 artists who think this is a good idea. With a straight face the chairman-elect of the RRS Marc Marot (a former chief exec of Island Records) tried to claim that the move was not to pad out the already fleshy wallets of millionaire rock stars but instead to help new artists who have a greater dependency on gigs for their income. Yeah, right. If that's the case then why not come out and say that no money pulled in by the RRS will be given to a wealthy established artist? In any case any new artist who finds tickets to their gigs being resold online for more than face value will be well chuffed and can start considering themselves as having made it, secure too in the knowledge that financial worries are to be a thing of the past.

But the most outrageous justification given by Marot was that "it is unacceptable that not a penny of the £200m in transactions generated by the resale of concert tickets in the UK is returned to investors in the live music industry." Following the same logic a property developer (i.e. an investor in the property industry) could claim it is entitled to a cut of any profit made when a house they build and sell is subsequently sold on. Brass as monkeys property developers may be, but they know that they'd never get away with such a scam. However, this loose affiliation of millionaire rock stars who 'invest in the live music industry' think they can do just that. Who do these guys think they are?

As far as I know absolutely nobody out there in the free market is offering something with a price tag that says 'it costs this amount, but if (because I don'r offer a possilbity of a reimbursement ) you then go and sell it to someone else, you must give me a slice of your sale price' (Update: Aidan puts me straight on this point below in the comment section where he points out that a % of a painting sale or a soccer player transfer is passed back to the artist / original soccer club). That sort of mentality is more at home with pyramid schemes than the free market.

Yes, it is true that there are some problems with the reselling of tickets on the interweb but trying to just grab a slice of an illicit cake is simply not a credible way of addressing the issue. If they were really serious about this, these artists & their management teams would get together to put in place preventative measures to stop, or at least reduce the numbers of, tickets being resold online (such as a mechanism for reimbursing a fan who has bought a ticket and unexpectedly finds s/he cannot go to the gig, this being something that could be provided for a modest charge offered on an opt-in basis at the time of the booking, just like it is with many airlines).

In the meantime anybody thinking of buying a ticket online via the likes of eBay just needs to do as they would for any other purchase: research what is being sold, who is selling it and for what price. If they are comfortable on all levels then go ahead and make the purchase. The same Caveat Emptor approach is valid be it for the purchase of a tube of toothpaste, a semi-d in Leopardstown or a ticket to see Led Zep in London.

More ...

[Read More...]

Posted in: Blogs, Promenade
Actions: E-mail | Permalink |

Search Articles

Nuggets from our archive

2001 - Early career profile of Damien Rice, written by Sinead Ward. This insightful profile was written before Damien broke internationally with the release of his debut album 'O'. This profile continues to attract hundreds of visits every month, it being linked to from Damien Rice's Wikipedia page.