Ticketmaster recruits scalpers to promote resale business, undercover investigation reports

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Under this scenario, Ticketmaster successfully inflates ticket prices and successfully profits not once, but twice - first on the fees of the initial ticket sale to scalpers, then on the fees captured during the pricier resale transactions made on TradeDesk.

The audience heard that Ticketmaster has developed a professional reseller program and within the past year launched TradeDesk, a web-based inventory management system for scalpers.

Ticketmaster says that as long as there is an imbalance between supply and demand in live event tickets, "there will inevitably be a secondary market".

The journalists posed as professional scalpers and were recruited onto Ticketmaster's professional reseller programme.

Ticketmaster and its parent company, Live Nation, have not returned CBS News' requests for comment.

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"We don't share reports, we don't share names, we don't share account information with the primary site".

Ticketmaster is now accused of running what looks like an underground ticket scalping project that may be driving up prices and costing consumers millions.

Box-office giant Ticketmaster may have benefitted from looking the other way on ticket scalping-related violations of its own terms of service, a Canadian report revealed on Sep. 19. For Ticketmaster, this market is "particularly lucrative", CBC reported. When the owner posted it for resale for $400 on Ticketmaster, the company stood to collect an additional $76 on the same ticket. For example, the CBC writes, "As scalpers hit milestones such as $500,000 or $1 million in annual sales, Ticketmaster will knock a percentage point off its fees".

TradeDesk also allegedly allows resellers to bypass the six to eight ticket limit Ticketmaster imposes to ostensibly deter scalpers by turning a blind eye when resellers use bots to sweep up large quantities of tickets. The company touts it as "The most powerful ticket sales tool".

"We clearly delineate between standard tickets sold by the venue and tickets sold by third parties, with clear disclosure that resale prices may exceed (or be lower than) face value", the company told the news outlets in a statement. On paper, Ticketmaster have outlined strict ticket purchasing limits for customers in their terms & conditions, they have compelled governments to outlaw scalping and have even sued online ticket brokers for using bots.

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