by Mike Masnick
Fri, Sep 18th 2009 8:15am
Earlier this year, we had covered the news that Ticketmaster was pushing paperless tickets as a way to cut down on scalping, and now that story seems to be getting much wider coverage. The idea is that if you buy a ticket, you have to be the one to show up, with an ID and the credit card you used, in order to attend. Ticketmaster will allow you to transfer... but it can limit the price of a transfer and charge you a fee for the transfer. That makes it seem like this is a lot more about collecting more fees from the secondary market, than really cutting down on scalping. Not to mention that it seems likely to cause problems. How do you handle buying tickets for someone else as a gift? Under this system, you'd need to buy... and then "transfer" at a fee. And what if you really can't go, but the ticket has already been transferred once (a limit they set on the system). Finally, does it really make sense to block out basic market mechanisms? I recognize that there's an issue of scalpers buying up huge blocks of tickets, but there are better mechanisms to deal with that, that don't involve limiting what legitimate purchasers can do with their tickets.
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