Amendments on secondary ticketing rejected in UK

Featured Image: Laura Stanley

Amendments around a bill that includes a focus on secondary ticketing platforms have been rejected in the UK. 

Changes were suggested for the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumer Bill, but Members of Parliament (MPs) voted 273 to 163 to overturn the House of Lords recommendations, according to reports.

Resale-focused amendments to the bill included requirements around proof of purchase, limits on ticket numbers and providing additional information.

Sir Chris Bryant, the Shadow Minister for Creative Industries and Digital, and also the Labour MP for Rhondda, said that more needed to be done to address ticket scalping.

“These people are despicable parasites, preying on fans, and we need to go far, far further to address this issue,” he said in the Commons earlier this week, as per reports.

“In 2016, one ticket for Adele at the O2 arena in London was listed on GetMeIn for £24,840 – that’s 290 times the face value of the ticket.

“The amendment that comes from the Lords does the bare minimum, it really does. It would require facilities to only accept postings if they provide evidence of purchase from the primary market, it would limit resale of more tickets than a single customer can buy on the primary market and it would require clear information on the face value, and traders’ business name and address on the first page of a secondary ticketing facility.”

Business Minister and Conservative MP Kevin Hollinrake was asked why the current government would not support the changes. He said: “This government has gone further, certainly a lot further than previous regimes have done, in terms of strengthening terms and guidance.”

Labour MP Barbara Keeley gave an example of ticketing scalping and said: “If the minister looks on a secondary ticketing site and sees three tickets together for a Taylor Swift show on June 22, going for £72,000 – tickets that had a face value of £170 each – how is this market working?”

Hollinrake replied: “I agree, some of those examples are clearly shocking. The key is what measures are you going to put in place to address it?

“Now in Ireland, for example, they completely banned secondary sales, and yet the prices shown on the internet are an equivalent level to what she’s [Keeley] just described. So there is no perfect solution here for what’s been already tried.

“But we’re very happy to look at the evidence, look at what might be done, and do something that’s effective rather than something that is crowd-pleasing.”

The suggested changes were in line with recommendations made by the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in a 2021 report. The UK Government rejected CMA’s recommendations this time last year.

Posted in LegislationTagged