Artists lend support to FanFair fans’ guide
British anti-ticket touting organisation FanFair Alliance has followed up its #ToutsOut guide for managers with a similar handbook “demystify the ticket-buying process” for fans.
The guide, downloadable for free from FanFair, centres on ’10 tips for ticket-buying’, which include signing up for artists’ and events’ mailing lists, checking for presales and – crucially – learning to differentiate unauthorised secondary sellers from authorised primary ticket agents.
It has won the support of several prominent artists, including Ed Sheeran, Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien, Mumford & Sons, Royal Blood, Mark Knopfler, Amy MacDonald and You Me at Six’s Josh Franceschi, all of whom will push the guide on the social media channels.
“It’s important to get educated about ticket touts,” says Sheeran. “Read the advice in the FanFair Alliance guide – find out who the authorised ticket sellers are, avoid the secondary sites and, if you’ve got to sell a ticket, sell if for face value.”
Knopfler comments: “The FanFair Alliance Guide offers common sense advice to ticket buyers, and the more widely it is adopted, the better it will be for fans and performers. Nobody wants the front ten rows of their event to be full of super-rich consumers who may or may not actually be into the music, as opposed to just attending the event.”
“FanFair has consulted widely to come up with ten simple tips that aim to empower audiences and help them better navigate the ticket-buying process”
Also backing the guide are MPs Nigel Adams and Sharon Hodgson, the co-chairs of the All-Party Parliamentary Group in Ticket Abuse.
“The guide is a response to the dark arts employed by the resale platforms Get Me In!, Seatwave, StubHub and Viagogo,” explains FanFair campaign manager Adam Webb. “These businesses not only fuel industrial-scale levels of ticket touting, they also use a range of manipulative marketing techniques that sow confusion when tickets go on sale and direct fans away from legitimate and authorised sellers.
“In response, FanFair has consulted widely to come up with ten simple tips that aim to empower audiences and help them better navigate the ticket-buying process. We want to help fans identify legitimate and authorised ticket agents, and to promote the concept of ethical resale – where ticket purchasers who can genuinely no longer attend a show have a safe and secure mechanism to sell on their ticket at face value. The vast majority of artists and music businesses are with us on this issue.”
The British government earlier this month announced its intention to ban ticket bots, which Webb described as a move “hugely important in helping clean up this market”.
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Promoters warned over fake Dire Straits agents
A spokesman for Mark Knopfler has warned concert promoters of a “flurry” of phoney agents claiming to represent the guitarist or his former band, Dire Straits.
“Certain unauthorised agents are offering Dire Straits and Mark Knopfler shows to unsuspecting promoters across the globe,” says a representative for Knopfler. “In particular, there seems to have been a flurry in South America recently.”
He adds there are “no plans whatsoever” for any shows by Dire Straits, who disbanded in 1996 and have not played together since a charity gig in 2002, and that “any Mark Knopfler shows should be booked only through Brent Smith at William Morris [Endeavor] for North America and Andrew Zweck at Sensible Events for the rest of the world.
Knopfler, who is signed to Universal Music Group, is one of several performers known to be licensing their performance royalties directly, through PACE Rights Management.