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Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

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Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Old 02-06-23, 11:38 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by John Galt
That's probably the band selling them.
Scalping quickly became legal when it went corporate with Ticketmaster, StubHub, and even the artists themselves getting in on the game. Then they became "ticket brokers."

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Old 02-06-23, 11:55 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

I wonder what would happen if they were somehow limited to only reselling tickets at, say 10% over original purchase price.
Old 02-06-23, 09:35 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Gotta say, Ticketmaster seems to have learned some lessons from the Taylor fiasco. They are trying to be more transparent now.
I registered for Beyonce tickets on the Fan Verified Citi Pre-sale. Much like for Taylor, I got waitlisted. Here is what they sent me :

Right now, you are on the waitlist for RENAISSANCE WORLD TOUR Citi Presale powered by Verified Fan.

If tickets remain available to sell after the initially selected fans shop, we will use a lottery-style selection to invite Verified Fans from the waitlist to shop.


What's Next

Stay tuned, if youíre selected to move off the waitlist, you will receive a text with a unique access code and link to join the Presale.

Only Verified Fans with unique access codes will be able to join the Presale. Do not attempt to join unless you receive a code.


FYI
  • If youíre on the waitlist, youíre not alone. Because registration demand was 8X over ticket inventory, most people are on the waitlist.
  • Usually, not everyone that gets an access code shows up to the sale, and some that show up donít buy. We expect to lean into the waitlist to send more access codes out tomorrow. There likely wonít be enough tickets to go around, but you still have a shot.
  • If you registered for other onsales, you still have a chance to be selected based on the lottery-style process
Old 02-07-23, 02:35 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

How does ticket sales, fees and prices compare in the rest of the world?
Old 02-09-23, 03:40 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Okay, was able to get Beyoncť tickets. Used my Raiders PSL for presale access. Took about 20 minutes to get to purchase tickets and there were plenty available to choose from scattered around the arena.
The best seats were almost $500 each (and that DOESN"T include the 10% LET that is required on every live show ticket in NV). So I got lower bowl seats in the corner facing the stage.
Damage as follows :

Tickets
Tickets 2 x $295.18 = $590.36
LET on Tickets = $54.58

Fees
Service fee $78.15 x2 = $156.30
Facility Charge $8.00 x 2 = $16
Order Processing Fee = $5

Delivery
Go Mobile = Free

Total $822.24
Old 02-09-23, 05:42 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Wait... you just spent $822 for 2 tickets to a concert?

Does it come with anything else? A backstage pass? Gourmet dinner? Blowjob from Beyonce while she sloppily tries to sing the national anthem?
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Old 02-09-23, 06:24 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Ticket prices are really getting out of hand.

I saw the Rolling Stones on their Bigger Bang Tour, and out tickets for about the third row in the lower bowl near the stage were only about $200 for both.

Okay... checked my Rolling Stones ticket, and the ticket was $95 for the third row in 2006. From Ticketmaster. Not sure about the fees, but I think the total for both tickets was something in the neighborhood of $220. So my the complete price for my Rolling Stones tickets for similar seats cost about the same as the attached fees to Decker's Beyonce tickets.

And that was the fucking Rolling Stones!

In 2019 I did spend $229/ticket to see Metallica. That was for floor tickets with the "Unforgiven" package that also came with an exclusive lithograph, a gift box with a bottle opener, pin, and necklace, and the Some Kind of Monster blu-ray. I had to buy the package because by the time I was able to buy tickets they were sold out of floor tickets, but the package was a flat $229, and if I had bought floor tickets by the time all of the fees were applied it would have only been about $25 less than the deluxe package. Considering they had Jim Breuer as an opening act, I did end up feeling kind of ripped off. Don't know what the fuck they were thinking there...
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Old 02-09-23, 07:14 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Yeah tickets are getting crazy expensive. Adele way on the side, second level was like $350 or over $400 each with fees.
As I have mentioned before, Springsteen (great seats) were $400 + fees.
Taylor Swift in Philly, VIP package? Don't ask.

This show I was less interested so I skipped the top tier tickets altogether. Nothing on the floor, nothing good in lower bowl. Those were all $500 before LET and fees. I didn't want to pay that much. Under $300 sounded okay for a lower bowl seat with a decent but far view of the stage (this is a show my wife wanted to see, BTW). But when it goes from $600 in your head to $800 at checkout? That blows!

What's so bad is that those fees get really exorbitant. Why should Ticketmaster get $150 for selling two mid-level tickets to a Beyoncť show? It just seems like the amount of service they provide is not commensurate with the fees imposed. Seriously, does it require any more service to sell two $500 tickets than it does to sell two $150 tickets? If not, why does it cost so much more?
I would love some sort of federal regulation or cap on their fees. They are really out of control.
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Old 02-09-23, 07:17 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

If that's the state of concerts and tickets going forward then I am completely done with the live music experience of top-tier acts.
Old 02-09-23, 07:27 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by Why So Blu?
If that's the state of concerts and tickets going forward then I am completely done with the live music experience of top-tier acts.
Yes these top tier concerts are really, really expensive now. (Most have fairly reasonable ticket prices for bad stadium seats -- everything for Adele is very expensive but that's a 7000 seat theater).
It's easy to get mad at the performers (and I certainly do, this is a very costly run of concerts for me), but the flip side is if the seats right next to me are asking $2300 each (plus fees) via Ticketmaster Verified Resale, should we really criticize Springsteen for asking $450 for those seats? It's not very man-of-the-people of him, but he's entitled to sell a ticket for close to what its perceived value is.
Anyway, with the massive demand, especially for Taylor Swift and Beyoncť, I don't see this trend reversing any time soon.
Old 02-09-23, 08:18 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by Why So Blu?
If that's the state of concerts and tickets going forward then I am completely done with the live music experience of top-tier acts.
I don't blame you.

The funny thing is I can't really complain about ticket prices because the artists I like aren't considered "top-tier" and don't command high ticket prices. The prices range from like $45-$70 or so and they play smaller 1,000-2,000-ish seat venues (which I 100% prefer instead of larger venues). That's the advantage of enjoying musicians instead of "pop-stars" and their over-the-top stage shows.
Old 02-10-23, 07:34 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

There's several reasons we're seeing a huge increase in ticket prices

1) Most musicians have to rely on touring revenue after Napster killed the music sales business. Sure, Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Harry Styles can make millions without ever setting foot on a stage, but any up and coming artists or fringe "stars" aren't paying the bills with streaming sales alone. Whereas the old bands were fine with selling tickets below market value because it was a service to their fans, today's artists see what the tickets are worth and would rather have the money to support themselves and their crew.

2) Ticketmaster has a lot more data now on what tickets are worth. They've had two decades of collecting information on sales down to every individual seat in a venue and they know relative prices for how every seat compares. They're able to gauge demand by seeing how many VF signups occur before ever putting a ticket on sale. Notice how prices are rarely disclosed until VF enrollment is complete? TM+ also gives them data on resale prices so they can determine what market prices are regardless of face value. You're seeing a lot of Dynamic Pricing, VIPs, Preferred Seating, Aisle Premiums, Holdbacks, etc. All ways of them playing games with supply and demand to increase ticket prices.

3) FOMO is real with today's fans, and there's a much bigger premium on events and experiences than in the past. Social media has developed a culture of having to be at the show and not wanting to be left out. People want to be there to post that selfie or capture that video to generate likes. You're seeing a huge increase in prices of bands that are popular with 20 somethings and they're spending stupid amounts of money to be at these shows and festivals, a lot of it courtesy of these new pay as you go fintech companies.

4) There's a lot more visibility into the resale market. Where you used to have to deal with the sketchy guy outside the stadium, now you can hop online and hit up any of a myriad of sites to buy those tickets. Not getting seats to a popular event is almost expected, so shopping the secondary market is a lot more commonplace and accepted. With that and the rise in the gig economy has also come an influx of ticket resellers. They see the dollar signs between buying a ticket from Ticketmaster and what it sells for on the secondary and they think it's going to be an easy way to make some money from home. That just increases the competition for buying tickets and results in tickets selling out faster. Make no mistake, this is what the promoter wants to see. The "sellout" event where 10,000 tickets that end up on the secondary means they have removed all risk of not selling tickets and having to lower prices. They're getting paid now and not having to wait 6-12 months for the tickets to slowly sell, all while they're simultaneously shelling out millions in operating costs to get crews hired, stages built, rehearsals, etc.
Old 02-10-23, 09:11 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

I get all the reasons why tickets for the top acts have become so amazingly expensive. Like I said and you did, a ticket is worth what someone is willing to pay for it. And to be fair Beyonce, Taylor Swift, and Bruce all put up some bad tickets at a fairly reasonable price.
My issue isn't the $298 that Beyonce took, or the 10% entertainment tax which is state law. It's with the 25% surcharge that Ticketmaster is taking for providing a service that honestly couldn't cost them very much at all to perform, would be the same service for a $65 ticket as it would be for a $500 one, and amazingly still requires an additional $5 processing fee. There's no way that Ticketmaster should get $100 for selling a $400 ticket, nor should they be allowed to decide whatever fees they want. Just like bank, utilities and credit cards, there needs to be some kind of government regulation on ticketing fees for this monopoly.
I know Beyonce and her crew will be working hard for their $300 ticket. What the hell did Ticketmaster do to deserve their 25%? Certainly not processing the order, as that was an additional fee.
Old 02-10-23, 10:00 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Yeah, I wasn't responding to you in particular, just the general discussion.

The Ticketmaster fees are one of the major points of the antitrust arguments. When Live Nation owns practically all the major venues and Ticketmaster owns the ticketing system, and it's well documented that if a promoter wants to use a particular venue that they have to use Ticketmaster to sell the tickets, what incentive does Ticketmaster have to make fees competitive or to provide good customer service? Obviously, while Ticketmaster has expenses to provide their service, they need some income and need to show a profit, without competition, the fees have become increasingly cumbersome. If they implement a flat fee across the board, I'm sure it would be seen as a regressive tax on lower priced tickets. There's surely a better system they could have in place though (maybe small flat fee plus escalating percentage?). Who really knows, but we're not going to see it without government intervention. Didn't Biden call some of these out with his Junk Fees proposal in the SotU?
Old 02-10-23, 10:13 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Bands are starting to post now that it's becoming harder and harder to make any money touring (unless you're a mega-act playing stadiums). The costs of flights, fuel, truck/bus hire, visas etc. are all making it difficult to make money at a mid-level and below. I think we might eventually move to a lot more online events and a lot less in the flesh.
I know Slash has mentioned he has two full rig setups - one in the US and one in Europe as it's so expensive to send equipment back and forth. Unfortunately a lot of smaller bands just can't afford that kind of thing.

“It’s remarkable,” Steve Vai said. “Before you do a tour, you get all the gigs, the guarantees, you look at what your bottom line is, and it has changed, brother. First of all, unfortunately, the promoters and stuff are challenged in [being able to] pay what they used to pay, and it is just so much more expensive. The buses, and the fuel, and shipping gear to Europe? Oh my god! I couldn’t believe it. You are lucky if you break even. I have a lot of friends who are cancelling, big bands, because they just can’t get the numbers to balance.”
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Old 02-10-23, 10:36 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

^The Senate Hearing was very informative on that side. I assume the artist they had on there is very, very low level.....probably $20-25 tickets at 500-1000 cap venues with no leverage in negotiations, but he did a great job articulating his experience working within the LYV system. I don't have the exact numbers but this is pretty approximate to his breakdown: To book a gig, they have to pay Live Nation to reserve the facility. Then they have to use Ticketmaster for the ticketing system. On a $25 ticket, his fan pays $40-45 after fees. $15-20 obviously goes to Ticketmaster for the ticket fees. Then they back out the facility fees, which is around another $10/ticket that goes to Live Nation. Then the venue (owned by Live Nation) charges the band expenses for food, drink, towels, green room usage, etc. He made it a point that they don't get a breakdown of this or have any say in how much gets charged for certain expenses (The Live Nation CFO disputed this part). There goes another couple bucks or so off each ticket. They set up a merch table, and have to use the venue's (again, owned by Live Nation) POS system and the venue takes a cut of every sale of the band's merchandise. Meanwhile, the venue is selling $10-12 beers that the band gets no cut of. At the end of the day, the band's left with about $10 off each ticket which has to pay for his overhead.....health insurance, food, travel, lodging, agent fees, etc. So when all is said and done, out of the $45 his fan spends on a single ticket, plus whatever else on Merch and Beer, the band gets about $6 to split amongst themselves.

Last edited by John Galt; 02-10-23 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 02-10-23, 03:27 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Using Decker's Beyonce tickets here because it's a convenient itemized example...

Tickets
Tickets 2 x $295.18 = $590.36
LET on Tickets = $54.58

Fees
Service fee $78.15 x2 = $156.30
Facility Charge $8.00 x 2 = $16
Order Processing Fee = $5

Total $822.24
Ticket = $295.18
LET = $27.29
Service Charge = $78.15
Facility Charge = $8.00


LET is a tax, so that goes on Las Vegas/State of Nevada.

The Facility Charge is $8.00, and that goes to the venue where the concert will be held.

Now, does the full price of the ticket, $295.18, go to the artist, and the $78.15 service charge goes to Ticketmaster? Are they just breaking down the total charges in a way that they didn't in decades past?

A $78 charge from the seller on a $295 ticket doesn't really seem out of line. It sounds ridiculous on the face, but it wouldn't be unexpected to pay $373.33 on a product that wholesales for $295.18 at a retail store.

Does breaking the charges down like this make it more appealing to buy an over-priced ticket? I suppose that, on the face of it, a $295 ticket is more appealing than a $411 ticket, even if they're attaching all of these other fees and taxes on after the fact.

Thirty years ago, I could buy a ticket just by walking up to the box office and paying the face value for the ticket, which, presumably included all of the venue fees, taxes, and service charges in its actual price.




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Old 02-10-23, 04:12 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

The service fee would be what Ticketmaster gets for providing the service of selling the tickets. Just like record stores would charge a fee on top of what's printed on the ticket. That's what they get for handling the ticket sales for the promoter. Back in the day it was a dollar or so. Ticket says $10, record store charges $11, The dollar goes in store's cash register, the $10 is kept separate and goes to promoter. The promoter would collect the money from the tickets and pay the artists whatever the deal was they agreed to. Promoter keeps the rest.

You want to make some money? Rent an arena, hire an artist to show up, pay a printer to print tickets, get record stores to sell the tickets for you. Whatever is left over after paying the arena, artist and printers is your profit. That's concert promotion. That's what Bill Graham did. Or Col. Tom Parker (without owning the artist).

Are Ticketmaster the promoters now? Does Ticketmaster get a cut of the ticket's face value? If so, I'd call that an anti-trust case. The business needs to be broken up. The company providing the service of ticket distribution should not be the same company making a profit from ticket sales themselves.
One business gets the service fee, and that's it.
Another company shares in the ticket revenue.
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Old 02-11-23, 07:59 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man
Using Decker's Beyonce tickets here because it's a convenient itemized example...



Ticket = $295.18
LET = $27.29
Service Charge = $78.15
Facility Charge = $8.00


LET is a tax, so that goes on Las Vegas/State of Nevada.

The Facility Charge is $8.00, and that goes to the venue where the concert will be held.

Now, does the full price of the ticket, $295.18, go to the artist, and the $78.15 service charge goes to Ticketmaster? Are they just breaking down the total charges in a way that they didn't in decades past?

A $78 charge from the seller on a $295 ticket doesn't really seem out of line. It sounds ridiculous on the face, but it wouldn't be unexpected to pay $373.33 on a product that wholesales for $295.18 at a retail store.

Does breaking the charges down like this make it more appealing to buy an over-priced ticket? I suppose that, on the face of it, a $295 ticket is more appealing than a $411 ticket, even if they're attaching all of these other fees and taxes on after the fact.

Thirty years ago, I could buy a ticket just by walking up to the box office and paying the face value for the ticket, which, presumably included all of the venue fees, taxes, and service charges in its actual price.
Googling what Beyonce gets paid for a concert, $3.5 million comes up. If 70,000 tickets are sold for the stadium, that's only $60 of the ticket price. Who's getting the other $235, or anything over $60.
All Ticketmaster should be entitled to is the $78.15 service charge for providing the ticket distribution. A middleman. They shouldn't profit from the concert itself. Are they making 4x what Beyonce gets?
To use the record store analogy again. The record store can't decide to charge more based on how long the line is outside the door. If Led Zeppelin tickets had $10 printed on them, a Tower Records store shouldn't be allowed to charged $40 for them, and only turn over the $10 to the promoters.
Am I misunderstanding what's going on? Is there another party involved that's getting $15M+ plus the show?

If they want to play around with the ticket prices based on demand, fine. That money should go to the artist. Beyonce, and other artists should make a deal upfront giving Ticketmaster a set in stone fee for every ticket they sell, in this case $78.15, the artist gets the rest.

Last edited by rw2516; 02-11-23 at 08:07 AM.
Old 02-11-23, 09:16 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by rw2516
Googling what Beyonce gets paid for a concert, $3.5 million comes up. If 70,000 tickets are sold for the stadium, that's only $60 of the ticket price. Who's getting the other $235, or anything over $60.
All Ticketmaster should be entitled to is the $78.15 service charge for providing the ticket distribution. A middleman. They shouldn't profit from the concert itself. Are they making 4x what Beyonce gets?
To use the record store analogy again. The record store can't decide to charge more based on how long the line is outside the door. If Led Zeppelin tickets had $10 printed on them, a Tower Records store shouldn't be allowed to charged $40 for them, and only turn over the $10 to the promoters.
Am I misunderstanding what's going on? Is there another party involved that's getting $15M+ plus the show?

If they want to play around with the ticket prices based on demand, fine. That money should go to the artist. Beyonce, and other artists should make a deal upfront giving Ticketmaster a set in stone fee for every ticket they sell, in this case $78.15, the artist gets the rest.
I have no idea where that $3.5M number comes from, if itís from this tour (which is undoubtedly way more per ticket than the last tour), and if itís remotely accurate. But that ticket fee goes obviously not just to Beyonce, but the entire crew, the moving expenses, the many dancers, musicians, then the show promoters who put the whole thing together (assuming that isnít Beyonce and her people). A Beyonce show is much more elaborate than say a Metallica stadium show, and therefor more expensive to put on.

Regardless, Ticketmaster is getting overly paid in fees. As I said, thatís a ton of expense to put on a show like this and that expense (as well as the incredibly high demand) is reflected in the high ticket price. Why on earth does Ticketmaster get to collect an additional 25% of the face price of the ticket? For providing a website that queues people and sells them their choice of available tickets? For providing a skeleton crew of CS agents? (Iíve tried to reach them before with issues and itís really difficult to get anything done with their CS number). I donít know exactly how TM figures their fees, but it has to be a percentage ó they canít be charging $76 on a $150 ticket, I assume. Like I said itís unregulated and I just donít think thereís any way you can justify a 25% mark up on an expensive ticket for what service TM provides. Somebody here compared them and their fee to a retail store, but thatís not really fair. A retail store has to rent physical space, hire employees and most importantly has competition. If Ticketmaster can charge 25% fees with impunity this year, whatís to stop them from charging 33% next?

With high demand for tickets, the prices are going to continue to rise. Plus there is the issue that as I noted, you donít see the fees until Checkout, at which point youíre pretty much pot-committed. Often times you wonít even see the ticket prices until the frantic sale starts, then youíre on the clock ó buy now or miss out. Itís not like a super-popular show such as this one will have many tickets for less on the secondary market. I had to laugh during checkout when TM tries to upsell you on ticket insurance. Now I have on rare occasions, during the earlier days of Covid, bought that insurance because I was legit worried that an illness or a late connecting plane flight might cause me to miss a residency show (they tend to have lots of dates, so less immediate demand for secondary market tickets). But for something like this? If I canít make it, I could sell that ticket for double. No way do I want to pay $60 or whatever to give Ticketmaster the opportunity to sell it for a fortune instead.
Old 02-11-23, 10:13 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

And while it has nothing to do with Ticketmaster, since weíre talking about how much headlining artists get paid, I thought this thread was timely and relevant.
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Old 02-11-23, 10:40 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

The majority of what a performer makes, nowadays and even for a while, is based off of licensing and merchandise. T-shirts, programs, etc. That's the bulk of what a band or solo act makes. Nevermind the concession sales that I'm sure the venue takes. But the touring itself, unless you're a gigantic act, is peanuts compared to the auxiliary sources of income.
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Old 02-14-23, 08:58 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Ticketmaster rips us off, but do they charge the bands themselves on top of that also? Double dipping?

Just bought Ghost tickets today. So in the past 2 months , I have bought 4 tickets to each show.

Ghost
Rob Zombie/Alice Cooper/Ministry
Metallica 2 day show

over $3200. And over $500 in fees. And you cant even get a physical fucking ticket anymore.

Old 02-17-23, 08:40 AM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Here's a good podcast with Fred Rosen, who was the CEO of Ticketmaster from 1982-1998 where he covers pretty much the entire history of the event ticketing industry and all the dirty details of what goes on behind the scenes.

Fred Rosen Podcast
Old 02-17-23, 08:10 PM
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Re: Ticketmaster--where's the outrage?

Originally Posted by bchbdaddy
ticketmaster rips us off, but do they charge the bands themselves on top of that also? Double dipping?

Just bought ghost tickets today. So in the past 2 months , i have bought 4 tickets to each show.

Ghost
rob zombie/alice cooper/ministry
metallica 2 day show

over $3200. And over $500 in fees. And you cant even get a physical fucking ticket anymore.


jfc!

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