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Dave Marsh on Ticketmaster
May 29, 2002 11:22 AM   Subscribe

Dave Marsh on Ticketmaster : Bands used to be able to get around Ticketmaster's high surcharges by setting aside tickets for fan club members, because TM's "convenience" charges didn't apply to fan club tickets. Now "artists can hold back no more than eight per cent of their tickets, and they can only sell them to fan clubs of which Ticketmaster approves."
posted by espada (23 comments total)

 
How many times a day do we have to hear about large corporations fucking us in the ass? It really makes me feel helpless when the GWuberment won't do anything to stop it (or democrats either to be fair). I feel like moving somewhere else, but the sad truth is, it's probably the same everywhere else. This is the world we live in. Protest doesn't work, apparently competition doesn't work, and boycotts don't really work. What's a music fan / consumer / regular joe to do? I guess we all have to suck it up & pay if we want to see major label recording artists.

Note: I haven't bought a ticket from ticketmaster since 1992 & this still really pisses me off.
posted by password at 11:42 AM on May 29, 2002


How many times a day do we have to hear about large corporations fucking us in the ass?

Until you learn to be a good consumer, mister! Now bend over.
posted by Skot at 11:52 AM on May 29, 2002


apparently competition doesn't work

What competition? Ticketmaster has none. If only there were some way to deal with monopolies by using the court system...
posted by daveadams at 12:18 PM on May 29, 2002


Yeah, I've given up on big venue or other Ticketmaster events...and did so back in the early to mid 90's. I still love club shows, but most of the big bands can't or won't do club dates, so I'll just have to miss them once they become mainstream and popular and move into the ranks of Clear Channel slavery.
posted by dejah420 at 12:31 PM on May 29, 2002


I think it all depends on whether you are in a 'right to concert tickets' state or not.

I haven't bought a ticketmaster ticket since they lied to my girlfriend about the location of the seats for the Raptors/Lakers game she bought me. Plus I realized that I could take a train downtown and buy the tickets from the ACC box office and take the train back for less than their $16 in service charges.

My hearing is better for not going to any big ticket concerts anyway. Why support Ticketmaster and Clear Channel? Go see your local acts. Your life will be richer for it and so will your wallet and the local scene.

PS - I misspelt ticketmaster as tickemaster and the spellchecker suggested 'increaser'!
posted by srboisvert at 12:39 PM on May 29, 2002


Ticketmaster is one of the many reasons I haven't gone to a large-venue live concert in many years. And don't even get me started on Clear Channel.
posted by SisterHavana at 12:50 PM on May 29, 2002


I'm a member of one such fan club: The Warehouse. The main draw of the organization is the fact that you can get cheaper tickets directly from the band and end up with great seats before the general public has a go at them.

According to nancies.org, in a club like The Warehouse with upwards of 60,000 members, this regulation would reduce the number of fan club members eligable for tickets at each venue by 85%.

Obviously, this forces the ousted fan club members to go back to ticketmaster. The sole reason I joined the fan club in the first place was to avoid dealing with ticketmaster - my motivation is obviously the cause of this.
posted by tomorama at 12:54 PM on May 29, 2002


Wait, so Ticketmaster is a bad company?
posted by Marquis at 1:01 PM on May 29, 2002


You have to love Ticketmaster. First MP3s killed music sales, and now this will squelch the artist's other revenue stream--live performance.

If its any comfort, ClearChannel, (the vertically integrated radio station, live promoter, Venue owner, tooth extractor and amateur proctologist "company") is losing money bigtime. Attendance at live performance is way down compared to 7-8 years ago and you can only blame the death of J. Garcia for so long before your shareholders hand you a convenience charge.

Maybe the Bush regime could be toppled in '04 by angry young music lovers fed up over DMCA, Clear Channel, and ticketbastard. . . Its something to hope for.
posted by BentPenguin at 1:15 PM on May 29, 2002


It's one thing to avoid big-name acts at large venues, but I had to go through Ticketmaster to buy tix for the now-sold-out Hives/Mooney Suzuki bill at Chicago's Metro. These are two fairly underground bands playing at a tiny club! Granted, I now live two hours away from Chicago, so while I could've avoided the "service charge" by going to the club myself, I'd loose the savings by paying for gas.
posted by Eamon at 1:35 PM on May 29, 2002


The music industry screws themselves over repeatedly... *sigh* how long until the whole thing collapses under its own weight?
posted by SpecialK at 1:42 PM on May 29, 2002


Maybe the Bush regime could be toppled in '04 by angry young music lovers fed up over DMCA, Clear Channel, and ticketbastard. . . Its something to hope for.

Oh, like they would vote...
posted by grum@work at 1:46 PM on May 29, 2002


It's one thing to avoid big-name acts at large venues, but I had to go through Ticketmaster to buy tix for the now-sold-out Hives/Mooney Suzuki bill at Chicago's Metro. These are two fairly underground bands playing at a tiny club! Granted, I now live two hours away from Chicago, so while I could've avoided the "service charge" by going to the club myself, I'd loose the savings by paying for gas.

Boy, your life sure is tough, huh? Damn Ticketmaster, making you pay gas money! Better start writing letters to your congressman.
posted by ljromanoff at 1:48 PM on May 29, 2002


Yeah, you're right, ljromanoff, I should stop my god damned whining.

Actually, the point I was trying to make is that boycotting Ticketmaster isn't as easy as boycotting major-label bands and large venues (two things I wouldn't support anyway). Frankly, I think it's pretty swell that I was able to pick up the tickets at a local department store, it's the only reason I'd go into one.

If there were several competing ticket resellers, I'd think nothing of buying from whichever offered the best deal -- even if it was Ticketmaster. It's the fact that they're exploiting their monopoly that bugs me.
posted by Eamon at 2:40 PM on May 29, 2002


What I don't understand is why there isn't any competition any more. I wouldn't think it would be that hard to start an online ticket agency that had small fees. You could talk directly to club owners, promoters, bands, and managers to get them to use your online thang. They'd be happy cause the tickets would cost less (more people), and the ticket agency would be happy cause they're making money. If you could hook up with smaller indie labels that aren't under the Tikit_asster regime, they could send out thier scruffy college student buzzers to put in a few words at thier local hot spots etc.

Sounds like alot of work, I guess I'll just take a nap.
posted by password at 2:54 PM on May 29, 2002


You could talk directly to club owners, promoters, bands, and managers to get them to use your online thang. They'd be happy cause the tickets would cost less (more people), and the ticket agency would be happy cause they're making money.

Virtuous.com.
posted by ljromanoff at 2:57 PM on May 29, 2002


*sigh* how long until the whole thing collapses under its own weight?

The sooner the better.

::: looks at his watch :::
posted by rushmc at 3:47 PM on May 29, 2002


At alot of venues around here (LA), you pay the ticketmaster fees even at the club box office if you get them presale. My tickets for the House of Blues last night were $20 ea face value and cost me $30 ea after fees, a 50% markup!
posted by jonah at 4:11 PM on May 29, 2002


show me a politician who will fight this monopoly and i will vote for him or her.

republican, democrat, green, libertarian, nazi, i dont care.

there is nothing worse than Ticketmassa.

im serious about this.

there is nothing worse, not even Quale in '08.
posted by tsarfan at 4:48 PM on May 29, 2002


I wouldn't think it would be that hard to start an online ticket agency that had small fees.

I'm pretty sure Ticketmaster has exclusive agreements with most/all major concert venues. Even if you started a ticket agency, you wouldn't have any tickets to sell.

I haven't paid to go to a concert in more than 10 years. I don't miss it.
posted by neuroshred at 5:52 PM on May 29, 2002


As usual, my hero and role model(no joke) Dave Marsh is fighting the good fight. that is all.
posted by jonmc at 6:01 PM on May 29, 2002


what ever happened to tickets.com? They were supposed to be the TicketMasterKiller -- there was even an article in then-to-be-trusted-Wired about the company (if I remember right).

When I just checked the site, they were selling RollingStones Tix. I didn't go so far as to see what the price / service fees were...
posted by zpousman at 6:57 AM on May 30, 2002


Tickets.com runs all the venues around here in Conn., and they're pretty much as bad as Ticketmaster. $10 service charges aren't unusual.
posted by smackfu at 10:04 AM on May 30, 2002


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