If you’re after tickets for one of the most popular boy bands to come out of the X Factor, there’s only One Direction to go – a pawn broker. Tickets are being sold for as much as £1,000 on reselling websites. Is that right?
Fans were outraged, and maybe rightly so, but perhaps that’s just what you get when there’s such big demand?
However, almost immediately after the tickets sold out, they appeared on a number of ticket reselling websites, ranging from £75 to over £1,000.
Get me cheaper tickets
‘Like any marketplace, sellers compete with each other, providing the lowest price for consumers.’
In this case it looks like the ticket prices aren’t all that low – in fact, at the time of writing I have found one ticket being sold for over £1,300 on GetMeIn!. Face value tickets were originally priced at £30. Would you be willing to spend 40 times more? Even if my idol David Bowie was to announce one last tour, I wouldn’t spend £1,000 on a ticket.
“Fans” reselling through Ticketmaster
The story doesn’t end there. GetMeIn! is owned by… Ticketmaster. And it’ll make money from every ticket sold on this website. That means it could make more money on GetMeIn! than selling its original face value tickets.
Of course, it’s the sellers who are setting their own prices, not Ticketmaster. But although it’s not Ticketmaster’s fault prices are so high, it doesn’t feel right that face value tickets disappear in seconds, just to materialise on another Ticketmaster site at considerably higher prices.
Moreover, when Ticketmaster’s website tells you that face value tickets are sold out, One Direction fans are faced with an advertisement for these excessively priced GetMeIn! seats. That’s got to hurt.
Where do we go from here?
There’s no evidence that Ticketmaster is moving tickets from one site to another, so it’s almost certainly touts trying to make a quick buck. But I’d certainly be enraged, especially if I was the least bit concerned about the exploits of the bright-eyed and bushy-tailed Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson.
Then again, since their boyish looks and barely-broken voices have wooed thousands of fans, I’m starting to get enraged when touts appear to be rampantly exploiting them online.
Sure, it’s great that the tickets actually exist, compared to the eBay touts promising tickets that never materialise, but that’s still no compromise. One Direction are rumoured to be adding a couple more dates to their tour – is that good enough? BBC Watchdog will be interviewing Viagogo about this tonight, so we’ll update you when its statement comes in.
How much would you spend to see your favourite music artist or band? And what do you think can be done about extortionate prices on reselling websites?