Unite Against Ticket Brokers

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Michael Varacin, Dec 9, 2002.

  1. Michael Varacin

    Michael Varacin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 24, 2002
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ticket brokers are pissing me off. How can this practice be allowed to continue?

    Does anyone here REALLY understand how they manage to get all the good seats to a show? Not just a guess, but really understand the business?

    It seems to me that something illegal must be happening, while someone else looks away.

    Either way, the whole industry must be brought down. Why should I have to pay $400 to see Yanni from a good seat? But of course, I have to buy two, so that is $800 for a f'n concert? I just checked online- 16 front row tickets available for $300-$400. Jeeze. No wonder I could not get a good seat THE MINUTE THEY WENT ON SALE.

    WTF

    Enough ranting - I need to formulate a plan to make this illegal. Anyone want to join?

    It's bad enough this continues, but EVERY broker I have ever talked to is a COMPLETE A-HOLE. EVERY ONE!
     
  2. Michael*K

    Michael*K Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 24, 2001
    Messages:
    1,806
    Likes Received:
    0
    Back in the days when it was hard to get tickets to see the Blackhawks at Chicago Stadium (yeah, that long ago) I used to wait at the ticket window for seats for advance games to go on sale between periods of a game. Several times I was the first person in line and thought I'd be guaranteed great seats, only to see some schmo show up at the side door just as tickets went on sale and pay money for the first tickets off the printer. In that case, they obviously were getting help from the inside. I wrote letters to both Chicago daily newspapers, but nobody there was interested I guess.
    I've already reconciled myself to the fact that these operations will continue to exist. The only part I can do is not do business with any of them (not a problem anyhow with the prices they charge.) I have to say that when I see a local team go in the tank, I take great satisfaction that many of these brokers wind up eating their tickets. They actually have the nerve to cry poverty in the newspapers now that the glory days of the Bulls championship teams are in the rearview mirror.
     
  3. Lee L

    Lee L Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2000
    Messages:
    868
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, I have heard that some ticket brokers hire college kids, day-laborers and even run of the mill homeless bums to wait in line or man computer banks for them. I have a bad conspiracy theory streak in me that makes me wonder if Ticketmaster doesn't somehow help these guys out, but I would guess it is more likely that the brokers know people here and there at different stages of the process that funnel tickets to them as well. Personally, I have waited for many a ticket and talked to people at the front of the line who said that the best tickets were already gone right from the beginning, I agree those tickets have to go somewhere.

    The last Jimmy Buffett show we bought tickets for we took a chance and went to Ticketbastard.com and got some OK seats that way but nothing that much better than I would have gotten waiting at a B&M outlet. My guess would be that it might eventually get to the point that waiting in a real line is not the best way any more.
     
  4. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    1,826
    Likes Received:
    0
    I actually talked to a ticket broker and he explained to me how things are done most of the time. Several years ago Ticket Master used to have a regional time window when tickets went on sale. So say that a show was in Chicago, there would be a 5 to 15 minute time window where only people in the Chicago area could get tickets for that show. Then after the window was over, it would open up to the nation. Now that window is gone. So when a show goes on sale for Chicago, people in LA, NY, or wherever can buy tickets at the same time. The brokers then exchange tickets between each other. Say a guy has a couple of client in California that want tickets to a Notre Dame game. He'll call his buddy up in the Chicago area and trade tickets with him, or the broker will tell him to get him tickets for a big show in Chicago in return. I imagine the line at Ticket Master is a lot shorter in California for a Chicago show than it is in Chicago.

    My friends and I have actually started driving an hour or so to Ticket Masters to get tickets for the shows we want and it works almost all the time.

    I would love to see ticket brokers go the way of the dodo.

    -Dean-
     
  5. Craig

    Craig Second Unit

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 1999
    Messages:
    467
    Likes Received:
    0
    Demand is what drives prices. If ticket brokers disappeared you'd still be dealing with individuals scalping tickets. In fact that's no doubt why ticket brokers got in business, they noticed the huge demand for tickets and the fact people were paying above face value.

    Before ticket brokers became common I remember checking the newspaper classifieds for tickets for sale, driving to various parking lots and meeting with people who were scalping tickets. The prices were just as high and it was a lot more trouble. I'd much rather deal with a ticket broker.

    I use a couple of good brokers here in Atlanta. They've been very reliable and I've even had them go out of their way to exchange tickets for different nights when I had a change in plans.
     
  6. Michael Varacin

    Michael Varacin Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 24, 2002
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm not buying the idea that they have people wait in line or man computers. Because if I wait in line, or hit the computer, I always end up a ways away from the stage. But then you look at broker inventory, and they have half the seats by the stage. It can only be possible if they are controlling the system somehow. Otherwise, we all would have an equal % of the good seats.


    Oh yeah, the best part is it's illegal for me in my state to sell tickets above ticket value because I'm not a "registered broker". Or, as I put it, I'm not a "registered thief". So the state gets a licensing fee from the brokers, making it less desirable for them to care.

    Either way, I am thinking of a way to solve this problem. I don't like complaining without doing something, so I am formulating a plan before I take action.
     
  7. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

    Joined:
    May 6, 1999
    Messages:
    2,807
    Likes Received:
    0
    The Chicago Cubs have taken this concept to the ultimate level. They have recently created a subsidiary ticket broker service that will sell tickets for high-demand games at "market prices" (aka broker prices) rather than face value. So not only are they pissing off the fans, but they are irritating the brokers who can't get the primo tickets.

    I believe someone recently filed suit against the Cubs for this practice.
     
  8. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ticket brokers are, I'm sure, better than the parasitic vermin I encounter between Kenmore Square and Fenway Park, but I never understood why people deal with them - they are basically raising prices while not making any contribution to the product.

    I'm too much of a laissez-faire libertarian to get behind making the practice illegal, and just try and kill them with the free market: Don't pay more than you consider reasonable for a product, and don't pay it to people who provide little contribution to it.
     
  9. Michael*K

    Michael*K Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 24, 2001
    Messages:
    1,806
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree that some of these brokers hire bums and other down on their luck individuals to stand in line for them, especially if there's a limit on the number of tickets that can be purchased. I haven't waited for tickets to go on sale for several years, but when the Bulls and Blackhawks were hot, people would be camped outside Chicago Stadium hours, even days in advance. The people at the front of the line were always scruffy looking and you wondered how they could afford to eat, much less buy tickets to sporting events. Well, as soon as those ticket windows opened these guys jumped up and pulled enormous wads of cash from their pockets and started reading off games their "bosses" had targeted. After buying up as many seats as they could with the money they had available, they'd turn around and walk out the door...and guess who was there to meet them? Some shifty looking fellow would always collect the stacks of tickets, provide the bums with a little cash and then they'd be on their merry way to blow it at the local liquor store. I'm sure several years later these brokers have thought of a more "efficient" way to corner these tickets.
    Dean, why drive an hour to get the tickets you want? I just pick up the phone and call an out-of-state Ticketmaster (preferably in another time zone) when I want tickets for something hot in Chicago. All of the Ticketmaster locations are able to do tickets for venues in other states.
     
  10. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    Messages:
    12,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    The only way to really stop the practice is to bring demand in line with supply. And given that, for some events the demand will always be higher than the supply, a problem exists.
    The classic way to bring down demand is to boycott targeted events. Which means that you should organize a boycott of Yanni and let both the venue and concert producers know the reason for the boycott. And you may want to let Yanni know as well, as I’m quite sure that he is not an innocent pawn the prices being asked.
    Good luck on the boycott. You can sign me up immediately! I pledge to boycott any and all Yanni events until such time as the ticket prices are reduced to a level approved by you. [​IMG]
     
  11. Jonathan Burk

    Jonathan Burk Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 31, 1999
    Messages:
    452
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Castaic, CA
    Real Name:
    Jonathan Burk
    I remember seeing a Dateline or something about this, and apparently it pisses off some of the artists as well. They focused on a Billy Joel concert, and he had implemented a system for the front rows where you had to buy your tickets over the phone with a credit card, and you were limited to one pair, and you didn't get your tickets before hand. You had to show up with your card, and they would escort you to the seat.
     
  12. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    1,826
    Likes Received:
    0
    Michael,
    We could do that, but then you lose the fun in the road trip. [​IMG]
    Since I only go to one or two shows a year anymore, it is kind of fun to do a little road trip to get tickets. It reminds me of my youth. [​IMG]
    -Dean-
     
  13. Francois Caron

    Francois Caron Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 1997
    Messages:
    2,143
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    Francois Caron
    In Montreal, it's standard policy for the show's promoter to sell as many blocks of tickets to organized scalpers before they go on sale to the general public. This way, the promoter has a better chnce to sell out the show even if the stadium is only half filled. The scalpers are the ones left holding a bunch of unsold tickets in their hands, not the promoter.

    A ticket broker is nothing more than a form of legalized scalping. Changing the name doesn't change what it is.
     
  14. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 1999
    Messages:
    11,267
    Likes Received:
    0
    Duh, you know that scalping's illegal mostly because the state/city doesn't get their cut [​IMG]
     
  15. Scott Falkler

    Scott Falkler Second Unit

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2001
    Messages:
    442
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey, take it easy - I'm a broker!
     
  16. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 1997
    Messages:
    1,826
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  17. Lee L

    Lee L Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2000
    Messages:
    868
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, then tell us how it really works.
     

Share This Page