Started by dsanchez, March 18, 2023, 15:27:05
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QuoteThe Cure's frontman, Robert Smith, said on Thursday that Ticketmaster will provide $5 and $10 refunds to fans who purchased tickets for the band's North American tour after the band complained to the company about high fees.In recent months, Ticketmaster faced increased criticism from ticket buyers as well as from members of Congress who accused its owner, Live Nation Entertainment, of being a monopoly that hinders competition and harms fans.
QuoteWHETHER OR NOT Robert Smith intended it, the Cure's ticketing on-sale this week became a worthy case study for anyone to learn about all the efforts, and the complications, that come with making the ticketing marketplace a more equitable experience for fans. Readying its first U.S. tour in seven years, the English goth rockers had established what many live music experts would say were the ideal measures for a fan-centered experience to keep tickets at face value even as demand is higher than supply. The Cure likely left some money on the table when they declined to use dynamic pricing that now often accompanies high-profile arena shows, and they kept tickets non-transferable to make it harder for scalpers to sell tickets at hefty premiums. Despite those efforts, by the time the sale started on Wednesday, Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation were once again facing the vitriol of fans, this time over fees that in some cases amounted to more than the price of the ticket itself, alongside the more common tech issues that hold buyers in line for long periods of time or prevent them from purchasing tickets after selecting them. But for two days, Smith had been vocal about the band's intent to ensure fans only bought tickets at face value, calling out everything from scalpers to platinum tickets to the fees themselves, and by Thursday evening, he'd announced a rare move in which customers would get a small refund from Ticketmaster over the fees, stating that the company "agreed the fees were unduly high."...The Cure took extraordinary measures to help get reasonably priced tickets to as many fans as they could, and even in an unlikely event where the ticketing business could somehow be perfected overnight, the perpetual issue that will always leave a certain amount of fans disappointed comes down to way more demand for tickets than supply at a venue. Great musicians will always have that problem. There aren't that many ways around it, Smith acknowledged that and tried anyways, and that's to be admired."The reality is that if there aren't enough tickets on sale, a number of fans are going to miss out whatever system we use," Smith tweeted the day before tickets went on sale. "At least this one tries to get tickets into the hands of fans at a fair price."
QuoteAs part of the on-sale process for their forthcoming North American tour, the frontman opted out of Ticketmaster's "platinum" and "dynamically priced" ticket options, and restricted ticket transfers in markets where he was legally allowed to do so in places like New York, Illinois, and Colorado, which have all enacted legislation protecting resellers.Following the band's move to do this, Smith tonight (March 31) announced: "Approx 7k tickets across approx 2200 orders have been cancelled. These are tickets acquired with fake accounts / listed on secondary resale sites."Earlier today he also warned ticket buyers from attempting to circumvent ticket transfer rules."OFFERING TO SELL/SEND ACCOUNT LOGIN DETAILS TO GET AROUND TM TRANSFER LIMITATIONS... ANY/ALL TICKETS OBTAINED IN THIS WAY WILL BE CANCELED, AND ORIGINAL FEES PAID ON THOSE TICKETS WILL NOT BE REFUNDED," Smith added."..ORIGINAL FEES PAID ON THOSE TICKETS WILL BE DONATED TO AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL, AND THE TICKETS THEMSELVES WILL BE RESOLD TO FANS."
QuoteThe Cure leader also had another notion about the ongoing imbroglio over ticket fees and the secondary market, writing, "A WEEKEND THOUGHT... THIS ONGOING TM 'CONVERSATION' IS NOT TAKING PLACE IN A VACUUM... THE SYSTEM THAT VALUES PROFIT OVER PEOPLE IS REALLY WHAT NEEDS TO BE CHANGED..."To date, spokespeople for Ticketmaster have not returned Billboard's request for comment on Smith's ongoing battle against fees and the secondary market.