In a genuinely “huge if true” twist, a new class action lawsuit brought against Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation for unfair business practices and unjust enrichment alleges that the ticket giant hasn’t been able to rid its site of mass scalping because, well, they’re in business with the scalpers. In fact, according to undercover reporting by CBC News and the Toronto Star, Ticketmaster representatives allegedly admitted that the site not only ignores scalping bots, they also make it easier to resell scalped tickets using software called TradeDesk. After the CBC published their findings last month, Ticketmaster denied the allegations, saying it’s “categorically untrue that Ticketmaster has any program in place to enable resellers to acquire large volumes of tickets.”
However, the new lawsuit, which was filed Friday on California, claims that not only are the accusations true, but Ticketmaster allegedly allows the scalping to persist because it enables the company to collect a fee on both the sale and the resale of the tickets. The suit’s plaintiff is listed as one Allen Lee, but the class potentially includes, “All end-user purchasers in the United States who purchased a secondary market Ticketmaster ticket from a professional reseller participating in Ticketmaster’s resale partner program and/or using TradeDesk or a similar system operated by defendants, such as EventInventory or eimarketplace.”
This certainly isn’t the first allegation of shady business dealings by Ticketmaster in recent memory. In July, two ticket brokerage firms accused of using bots turned around and accused Ticketmaster “of creating and disseminating its own bots” to buy up tickets to resell, a claim the company called “patently false.” Ticketmaster famously settled a different class action suit, which found that the company did not properly disclose information about its fees. All of which is to say, don’t beat yourself up for not getting Hamilton tickets, yet. It’s a jungle out there.