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Ticketing biz reacts to ‘all-in’ pricing pledge

President Joe Biden confirmed that Live Nation and SeatGeek have agreed to allow fans to see full ticket prices upfront, including fees

By James Hanley on 16 Jun 2023

Gig tickets, Rhys Asplundh, ticketing apprenticeship

Music companies and organisations have delivered their verdicts on Joe Biden’s announcement on ticket fee transparency.

The US president confirmed yesterday (15 June) that Live Nation and SeatGeek have pledged to adopt “all-in” ticket pricing, which will allow fans to see the full ticket price upfront, including fees.

Live Nation says it will begin providing all-in pricing experience this September for concerts at the venues and festivals it operates across the US.

“Live Nation is proud to provide fans with a better ticket buying experience,” says Tom See, president of LN’s Venue Nation. “We have thousands of crew working behind the scenes every day to help artists share their music live with fans, and we’ll continue advocating for innovations and reforms that protect that amazing connection.”

The company has advocated for all-in pricing to become law for many years, and joined with an industry-wide coalition earlier this year to promote FAIR Ticketing Reforms. Live Nation attended a forum at the White House yesterday hosted by Biden to discuss the move and other potential reforms.

“The president’s commitment to scrap junk fees is a huge step forward for a more enjoyable, more equitable live experience”

Biden, who called out “junk fees” in his State of the Union address earlier this year, was joined by representatives of firms who have made new commitments, as well as platforms that already provide all-in pricing as part of their business models, such as Dice and the Newport Festivals Foundation.

“The president’s commitment to scrap junk fees is a huge step forward for a more enjoyable, more equitable live experience,” says Dice CEO Phil Hutcheon. “Dice has always done upfront pricing and it leads to more fans going out more often, and ensures everyone can access the artists they love. It’s great for fans, artists and live venues.”

However, the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA), which represents more than 2,000 independent concert venues, stresses the need for further reform in the sector.

“Upfront pricing should be the start of comprehensive ticketing reform that protects consumers from price gouging and deceptive practices by predatory resellers,” says executive director Stephen Parker. “Other needed reforms such as banning speculative tickets and deceptive websites would further protect consumers in the ticketing marketplace. We applaud the president for [yesterday’s] meeting and look forward to working with his administration and Congress to make comprehensive, bipartisan ticketing reform a reality.”

“Until Congress acts to eliminate excessive fees and secondary ticketing is carefully regulated, millions of consumers will still be the victim of predatory ticketing practices”

The National Independent Talent Organization (NITO), the trade group for hundreds of independent booking agents and managers in the US, shares similar thoughts, deeming the move an “important first step” on ticket fee transparency.

“NITO calls on all ticket sellers to clearly show fans the total price of a ticket up front but also provide an itemised breakdown so fans understand the ticket price set by the artist and the fees added by ticket sellers. Until Congress acts to eliminate excessive fees and secondary ticketing is carefully regulated, millions of consumers will still be the victim of predatory ticketing practices.”

 


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