The scandals behind Ticketmaster
For years, Ticketmaster has been a target of criticism, thanks to a lousy organization and incidents regulating the sale of tickets for different events.
A concert must be a unique experience, an event that generates emotions that take over the body and soul; pure magic that brings together thousands of strangers in one place and levels them to the same tune.
There are those who feel anxious as soon as they have the tickets in their hands, others who are melancholy moved by the thought that they will see their favorite group or artist, and even people who find peace, finally achieving a goal that seemed they would never achieve. realize.
This roller coaster of feelings, however, is compromised when facing what we can call a “common enemy” in the world of live entertainment.
Imagine that you travel from another city, even from another country, to be able to experience firsthand a recital where all your senses are connected by listening to the music that has accompanied you throughout your life; Finally, when you arrive at the location, you are denied access, alleging that there were failures in the process, despite the fact that you know that everything was executed correctly.
This has happened with Ticketmaster, not exactly to a few people, and not on specific occasions; it has become a nightmare and a constant fear for all those who enjoy this type of event.
At this point, surely the question arises… Where did Ticketmaster come from? And how has it become the absolute leader in terms of ticket distribution?
The American company was founded in 1976, in Arizona, by sales agents Albertt Leffler, Peter Gadwa, Gordon Gunn and Charles Hambry Jr.
Just two years later, they would take their services to the international level, which they currently dominate by having a presence in 34 countries on the five continents of the planet.
Their massive capacity would continue to increase in 2009, when they merged with the promoter Live Nation, which in turn belongs to Liberty Media, a mass media chain that runs events of the magnitude of Formula 1, or owns one. one of the most powerful teams in the MLB, the Atlanta Braves.
Live Nation manages more than 120 major venues around the world, as well as managing the career of international artists. By owning or partnering with these venues, as well as ensuring they almost completely shut out the competition, Live Nation is assured that whatever they do, buyers will always have to turn to them.
This, as we have been warning, is not a recent issue; Since 1994, with the multiple protests promoted by the grunge group Pearl Jam, a fight began in which some of the most influential artists face a giant of the concert industry.
These complaints accused Ticketmaster of creating a monopoly since, in 1991, they had eliminated their direct competitor, Ticketron.
Metallica, Blink 182, Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa or Harry Styles are some of the artists who have been affected by the Ticketmaster scandals, which seems not to learn -or does not want to learn- from its mistakes by repeating them for decades .
Ticketmaster apologizes to Taylor Swift and her fans for sales disaster. pic.twitter.com/ibW4wY7ENG
— Pop Crave (@PopCrave) November 19, 2022
In 2018, a new accusation would arrive, in which journalists from the CBC News chain attended an event in Las Vegas, where they were able to verify through a hidden camera recording that Ticketmaster was reselling its own tickets.
To this, the company responded in a not very convincing statement that a secondary market was imminent in the face of demand that could not be satisfied, and that, although many might not agree, they chose to participate in staying out in order to have “greater control.” ”.
That same year, an investigation where the official Ticketmaster website was monitored revealed that not all tickets are released at the same time, nor in the same areas, increasing their price for each layer of tickets that appeared as available, thus generating a sensation of scarcity that causes the public to pay inflated prices for tickets that were initially worth less.
In our country, the situation is not different; Live Nation tried in 2020 to buy 51% of the shares of OCESA, the Mexican promoter that has become a leader in all of Latin America, and to which venues such as Foro Sol, CitiBanamex Auditorium, Arena VFG, Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez belong, among many others. others. Finally, the purchase would close in 2021, in a multimillion-dollar operation that also involved the Televisa television network.
With this, we return to the same situation, in which a macro company covers an entire market and, therefore, can do with it what it pleases.
In 2022, two situations arose that we perceived as the perfect reflection of everything that Ticketmaster represents, first, when the influencer Miroslava Valdovinos went viral on social networks for reselling more than a hundred Corona Capital tickets at exorbitant prices, arguing that she had contacts in the company, that she would finally distance herself from the matter and even sue her.
To close the year, we had Bad Bunny, who performed at the Azteca Stadium in December, in two concerts where thousands of those affected with tickets in hand were left outside, since security personnel claimed that they were duplicate tickets.
In audiovisual material of the concert, it can be seen how, in effect, there are rows of empty seats, where the attendees who were denied access could have entered perfectly; finally, Profeco intervened, which forced the return of 100% of the payment plus 20% compensation, also changing the policies of the company, which now promises to return the total amount paid in the event of an error.
If you bought tickets for the concert of #BadBunny on December 9 and 10 at the #Aztec stadiumand you were denied access.
Go to https://t.co/VIrQmLsrL9 and start your claim process for a full refund + bonus of no less than 20% of the price paid. pic.twitter.com/hs3TUa3J64
— Profeco (@Profeco) December 15, 2022
The withdrawn tickets had also been torn by security personnel, which made it impossible to present physical evidence of the purchase, even if it was later verified that it was a correct and legal purchase.
This is an injustice, and it is unacceptable that even after all this the company remains unpunished, for acts that it will surely repeat in the future, with the certainty that nothing will happen and that there is no sanction or controversy that can stop them.