Wednesday, March 11, 2009

More on Ticketmaster

The issues around Ticketmaster may be a bit more complicated that the press has been reporting lately.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting today, March 11, 2009 that:

Ticket reselling -- also known as scalping -- is an estimated $3 billion-a-year business in which professional brokers buy seats with the hope of flipping them to the public at a hefty markup.

In the case of the Neil Diamond concerts, however, the source of the higher-priced tickets was the singer, working with Ticketmaster Entertainment Inc., which owns TicketExchange, and concert promoter AEG Live. Ticketmaster's former and current chief executives, one of whom is Mr. Diamond's personal manager, have acknowledged the arrangement, as has a person familiar with AEG Live, which is owned by Denver-based Anschutz Corp.

And it seems that Cohen's current World Tour is being promoted by the above mentioned AEG Live.

There's no suggestion that Cohen has a comparable arrangment to that of Neil Diamond referred to above. But the WSJ story provides addtional insight into how the secondary or resale market works - and doesn't work. This is a very interesting WSJ story and really worth reading.

Let's hope that Competition Bureau does a good job on this one. As I mentioned earlier, they initially didn't see any issue until Minister Tony Clement stepped in and told them to investigate.


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