Article by Maya-Rose Torrão
Scalping (selling a ticket for an event for more than its face value) has been happening for decades, however, with recent technological advances, scalpers have been able to able to use ticket-buying bots to purchase tickets en masse and at a frightening speed. The Anti-Ticket Touting Bill has been lying in a drawer somewhere for over a year but it was this week that the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation in Ireland put her put her foot down and explained that scalpers “deprive genuine fans of the opportunity to attend these events, and the time has come to put a stop to it”.
While there have been many wonderful online innovations that have made seeing your favourite live music act so much easier, one of the deputies involved in passing the bill agreed that, “the move to online sales and ‘bots’ has brought ticket touting to an industrial scale” and that the bill will benefit music and sports fans alike. It’s extremely frustrating, for example, for music fans to go online to buy tickets to an exciting show, only to have all of the tickets on the official website sold out within milliseconds. Only to find, when returning online a few hours later, that tickets are for sale on other websites for sometimes triple the original value.
While the bill may be a relief for fans, it remains to be seen that the effects will be felt, as the bill will only ban the scalping of tickets for shows in designated venues with a capacity of 1000 or over. Let’s hope that this change in legislation is tangible in the months and years to come, especially for fans who simply want to experience a show that means something important to them.