Dedicated to the Business of Contemporary Live Music

Fans ‘fed up’ with resale rip-offs, says survey

14 November 2017

ALMOST THREE-quarters of music fans are concerned about the state of online ticketing, while 80 per cent believe secondary ticketing is a rip-off, new research shows.

The Ticked Off: Consumer Attitudes to Secondary Ticketing report commissioned by FanFair Alliance, also found that 82 per cent wanted secondary sites such as Viagogo, eBay-owned Stubhub and Ticketmaster-owned Get Me In! and Seatwave, to be more transparent and show more details associated with the ticket.


Research companies AudienceNet and Music Ally surveyed 1,158 people across the UK for the report.

“The message from this research appears to be pretty clear: UK audiences are fed up,” says Adam Webb campaign manager for FanFair Alliance, which was set up in July last year by the managers of One Direction, Arctic Monkeys, Mumford & Sons and PJ Harbey

“The model of secondary ticketing promoted by Viagogo, StubHub, Get Me In! and Seatwave is causing them very real concern – although they are not against the concept of ticket resale.”

Over half the respondents said they found it difficult distinguishing between authorised primary sellers and unauthorised resale sites, while measures to prevent touting, including an approved resale provider (87 per cent) and personalised tickets with ID checks (75 per cent), received support.

When searching for tickets, 43 per cent headed first to search engine Google, where many resale sites pay to top its listings.

“The effects of this largely unregulated market are felt across every level of the industry – it’s not just affecting artistes, agents and promoters, but is also increasingly tarnishing the reputation of venues that have to deal with distraught customers who can’t gain access to a gig or performance,” says Phil Mead, MD of The Ticket Factory – NEC Group’s in-house agency for Arena Birmingham (cap. 15,982) and Genting Arena (15,594).


Other findings included 67 per cent of those surveyed saying they would attend fewer concerts after paying over the odds on secondary sites. Similarly, 60 per cent would go to fewer festivals, while 58 per cent supported the idea of face-value resale.

“Touts aren’t just responsible for massively inflating prices, they are also chipping away at the public’s confidence in the live music industry,” says See Tickets CEO Rob Wilmshurst.

Ethical resale platform Twickets’ CEO Richard Davies adds, “For too long, fans have been faced with a confusing and often deceiving secondary marketplace. We hope that this survey is a step towards putting an end to resale for profit.”

A Competition and Markets Authority investigation into online secondary ticketing, launched in December, remains ongoing.

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