Online ticketing platforms in Italy will be forced to prove to the Inland Revenue that they are ‘bot proof’ in new secondary ticketing rules.

Under the Decree of the Ministry of the Economy of 12 March 2018 on the “adoption of specifications and implementing technical rules on secondary ticketing”, online operators must apply for “suitability recognition” attesting to the fact that they are bot-proofed.

Sites that sell tickets must employ systems that are able to distinguish between a legitimate individual purchaser and an automated programme. Individuals who sell tickets on platforms operating on the secondary market, however, will not be prosecuted.

Fines for those found to be breaking rules range from €5,000 to €180,000. Sites can be forced to remove unlawful content, with administrators also given the ultimate power to close offenders’ sites down. 

The rules are designed to “ensure consumer protection” against the phenomenon of ‘bagarinaggio’, the use of bots to scalp tickets.

The Decree was welcomed by SIAE, the music industry group that has initiated several legal proceedings against the secondary ticketing sector over the last two years.

“We welcome this first regulatory intervention that puts a brake on secondary ticketing,” said Gaetano Blandini, general director of SIAE.

“At SIAE we will continue our battle against this unfortunate phenomenon, to protect authors, artists and their public but also all the organisers who operate with transparency in the entertainment and entertainment sector, a strategic industry for culture and for the economy of our country.”

Image: Kaufdex