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Top Dutch artists call for action on ticket touting

De Staat, Kensinton, Blaudzun and more have presented a manifesto demanding an end to resale-market "profiteering" from their tickets

By Jon Chapple on 21 Nov 2018

De Staat

image © De Staat

Some of the Netherlands’ most popular artists, including singer-songwriters Guus Meeuwis and Blaudzun and rock acts de Staat and Kensington, have written to culture minister Ingrid van Engelshoven to demand an end to high ticket prices on the secondary market.

The musicians, who are backed by the opposition Socialist Party (SP), on Monday presented a manifesto to van Engelshoven which called for action on touts, who reap profits from their shows while adding “nothing” to the music ecosystem.

“Our fans pay through the nose, but the profits go to someone who adds nothing – except annoyance [and] lots of frustration,” the manifesto, entitled Stop woekerhandel concertkaarten (Stop profiteering [from] concert tickets), reads.

Stop Woekerhandel Concertkaarten

“Performances are therefore becoming less accessible to the real fans, who can not always pay triple [the face value] for a ticket, so many seats are left empty unnecessarily.”

Among the solutions to countering ticket touting mentioned by the artists is the use of blockchain platform GUTS Tickets, which is gearing up for a 36-night run with Jochem Myjer at Amsterdam’s Royal Theatre Carré, in the largest blockchain ticket sale to date.

Van Engelshoven, the minister for education, culture and science, said in March she planned to discuss the issue with industry stakeholders, including Ticketmaster Netherlands, Mojo Concerts and promoters’ association VNPF, to see if any new legislation is needed to curb the problem.

According to Dutch public broadcaster NOS, van Engelshoven has yet to propose any legislation, with the minister believing that an outright ban on ticket touting is unenforceable. However, she hopes for a solution at a European level.

Dutch competition authority ACM dropped its investigation into alleged fraud in the secondary ticketing market in June 2016, after concluding that the regular public outcries over sold-out shows are a consequence of simple supply and demand, or “scarcity and popularity”.

 


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