Leadership / 07.25.19
Top Ticketing Platforms Plead for Regulation
Forbes (07/18/19) Hershberg, Marc
During discussions with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in June, ticket resale platform executives said they would back federal regulation requiring all ticketing websites to display the total price of Broadway tickets, inclusive of all additional fees and charges. StubHub did so in 2014 when it started using an "all-in" pricing model. John Lawrence, a regulatory and compliance lawyer at StubHub, said, "Our expectation with the exercise was that the rest of the industry would follow, and that this was something that consumers clearly wanted." However, the company returned to its previous model after one year of declining sales as no other company made the switch. Anna Laitlin, director of financial policy at Consumer Reports, pointed out that if the new pricing model "was consistent across the marketplace, then people would get used to it really fast, and like that knowledge that the price they're seeing is the price they're going to pay." Patti-Anne Tarlton, Ticketmaster's executive vice president of venues and promoters for North America, said any regulation would have to be at the federal level, and that violators would need to be penalized. SeatGeek founder Russell D'Souza concurred, saying he "would be worried about the compliance cost that we would have to deal with if it was on a state-by-state level." While the FTC acknowledged the arguments for government intervention, no regulation or guidance has been introduced.
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Tags: Theater , Regulations , News