Why You Have To Pay So Much for Good Seats

On March 11, the Wall Street Journal ran an article titled "Concert Tickets Get Set Aside, Marked Up by Artists, Managers" written by Ethan Smith. In it, Smith explains the practice of large promoters, Ticketmaster, and artists teaming up to take the best seats at concerts and then not selling them through regular outlets at face value, but instead selling the tickets through the "secondary market" while pretending to be fan-sold tickets at greatly higher prices (this is otherwise known as scalping). The main revelation is that it is the artists themselves who are doing this. Smith reports that the secondary market is now a $3 billion-a-year business, but does not give an estimate to how much of that is from these artist-controlled tickets.

The names he mentions in his piece are some of the largest in the business. Neil Diamond, Bon Jovi, Celine Dion, Britney Spears, and Van Halen. And even the current tour by Billy Joel and Elton John. According to Smith, the revenues for artists and promoters to split from this practice can be "more than $2 million" in a single tour for a top act.

Unlike in most posts, I am not going to provide commentary on this. I just felt that the fans should see this article and understand what is going on. Please feel free to leave your own comments and let us know how you feel about it.

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