Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Senate to hold hearing on Ticketmaster after Taylor Swift fiasco

After Ticketmaster had trouble selling Taylor Swift tickets last week, the U.S. Senate’s antitrust subcommittee will hold a hearing on the lack of competition in the ticketing market.

Klobuchar and Mike Lee, the committee’s top Republicans, did not provide a hearing date or witness list.

“High costs, site disruptions, and cancellations reflect Ticketmaster’s strong market position,” Klobuchar stated. “We’ll host a hearing on how industry consolidation damages customers and artists.”

After a merger in 2010, Ticketmaster said it was still subject to a consent decree with the Justice Department. It also said there was no “proof of widespread consent decree violations.”

“Ticketmaster has a huge portion of the major ticketing services industry due to a quality gap,” the business added.

Ticketmaster blamed presale troubles for Swift’s Eras tour’s record demand and an effort to block scalper bots.

Swift said it was “excruciating” to watch supporters struggle to get tickets and that Ticketmaster could handle demand.

Klobuchar was one of three lawmakers who urged in a letter Monday that Ticketmaster and its owner, Live Nation Entertainment, should be broken up if misbehaviour is revealed in an ongoing investigation.

In recent years, the DOJ has been more willing to take antitrust actions against big businesses, like the lawsuit that is still going on against Google until December 2020. 

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