Saturday, February 26, 2011

Who Owns Your Tickets: You or Ticketmaster?

Want to see the Phoenix Suns play the New Jersey Nets on Monday night at the Prudential Center in Newark? Worried about getting a ticket at the last minute? Worried about getting a ticket you can afford at the last minute? Well neither are a problem.  

In fact, you can get tickets for less than you'll pay for the gas to drive to the stadium, less than your parking and less than your beer or hot dog - go to StubHub and you can buy tickets starting at $1.98 in the upper corner. 

Want better seats? No problem, you can get 2 courtside tickets for $1,250 each. You can get tickets for $100, $40, $10; and other tickets every price range from $1.98 to $1,250.  Got a large group? No problem, you can 22 seats in the same row for $7 each. 

Worried about buying tickets online through StubHub? Well, don't, they offer a full guarantee

Have season tickets for the Nets, but can't attend the game on Monday night, and want to sell your tickets at the last minute for a competitive price?  No problem, sell it on StubHub.  Or if you don't like StubHub's pricing, selection, service, guarantee or fees, go to a competitor like SeatGeek, which offers tickets to the Nets-Sun game from $3 to $1,378.  Or go to TicketCity or TicketsNow (525 tickets listed between $6 and $310 for Monday's game) or one of the other many competitors in the online ticket marketplace.  

Seems great to have a liquid, safe, competitive, consumer-driven secondary market for tickets, doesn't it?  Sure does if you're a fan who wants to buy or sell tickets to sporting events or concerts, but probably not so great if you're a ticket monopolist like Ticketmaster, which has recently tried to introduce new paperless ticketing.  If successful, that would effectively kill the secondary market for ticket resales on websites like StubHub, and even possibly end ticket re-selling (or gifting) among individuals, including family members.   

You can find out more at the Fan Freedom Project website, which outlines some of the consequences of Ticketmaster's attempts to introduce restrictive paperless ticketing:

1. As a fan buying a restrictive paperless ticket, you cannot give your ticket to a friend if you suddenly cannot attend a game or concert.

2. If your grandmother buys you a restrictive paperless ticket to an event for your birthday, she’d have to meet you and stand in line with you at the venue or pay another service fee to transfer the ticket to you.

3. Season ticket holders for sporting events with restrictive paperless tickets would not be able to sell their extra tickets, nor could they give them to charity, without paying an additional fee.


At 2/26/2011 4:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ticketmaster is welcome to try it, but it seems a dumb move for them. Given that you can't trade their etickets, the option value goes down so the price will too. It would be trivial for them to offer an electronic exchange for their etickets, that way they could track when the etickets are traded and even take a piece of the final sale price, if higher. Ticketmaster would be stupid to do this non-tradeable route instead, as all it will do is drive up demand for the paper tickets.

At 2/26/2011 6:00 PM, Blogger Buddy R Pacifico said...

"restrictive paperless ticketing"

In other words:

TicketMaster impounding your property after purchase.

At 2/26/2011 6:30 PM, Blogger Robert said...

It's just capitalism. You're buying an option under a contract sale and there are two sellers, the Nets and Ticketmaster, after the preceeds. There is a potential conflict between the sellers that can be exploited. We'll have to see how the Nets like playing in front of a 20% filled house.

At 2/26/2011 7:33 PM, Blogger Bill Beeman said...

Well, looks like they've been looking at the success of DRM in Music and e-books and want to apply the same technique.

Hopefully, this will fall flat. Given the nearly obscene prices of sports tickets, this increases the risk to the buyer to the point where sales have to be affected.

At 2/26/2011 9:39 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Yeah, good luck. Who do you imagine is going to enforce these rules? You think Dodger Stadium can check 56,000 IDs each game?

They've been trying this for years, reselling etickets has never been a problem for me.

At 2/27/2011 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 2/28/2011 5:23 PM, Blogger Mr. Econotarian said...

Ticketsnow is owned by Ticketmaster, so obviously they are hedging their bets.

Paperless & transferless tickets are only demanded by a small number of music artists who are signaling to their fans. I suspect these are artists big enough to earn money from electronic song sales or old bands whose old fans still buy the profitable CDs.

The majority of music and all of sports ticketing will remain with a secondary market for the foreseeable future.

It is possible that some dynamic pricing/airline pricing/price discrimination on primary ticketing will appear up at some point, but only when the primary ticketer is willing to accept the non-sellout risk currently outsourced to ticket resale brokers.

At 2/28/2011 6:33 PM, Blogger HISSSSSSS.... said...

thanks a lot for you kind information about ticket price and also stubhub.i think we are easy to buy now a ticket to compare ticket price.thanks sida kala

kid rock tickets

At 3/25/2012 2:01 AM, Blogger LaBelle said...

I love paperless tickets for concerts. For sports ehhh. Ive been screwed because re sellers over and over. This week I wanted to get Jack white tickets so I do the 60$ presale and Im on literally the second it opens and nope sold out. So I wasted the 60 bucks ok. I do the regular sale and well its the same thing. I look at just stub hub and count how many they have and well they got over 10 percent of the tickets.


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