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Ticket scalping - why the fuss?

Posted by Fish 
Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 07:10AM
The recent thread on ROTR tickets, and some of the responses in it, have brought up something I've wondered about for a while: why is there such a fuss about ticket resale? I don't see what's so outlandish about having "ownership" of a ticket once you purchase it, and then being able to sell it to another interested party just like how you would sell a table or LP that you're not interested in keeping. And just as with selling all things - if somebody is prepared to pay crazy money for a ticket, then what is wrong with accepting their offer? Under most circumstances, there is certainly nothing evil about selling something for a higher price than you bought it for, whether that something is a ticket or an out-of-print book. . . if the person you're selling to didn't think the price was a reasonable one to pay (especially for a luxury item like a concert ticket, rather than an essential), they wouldn't pay out.

I know that some people are concerned about professional scalpers buying large numbers of tickets and then reselling them to other people. Again, I don't see this as somehow "bad" - it's just economics at work. The actual market value of going to a particular show or sports event is sometimes much higher than the price asked by the promoters, and so of course the show sells out quickly . . . the fact that people are willing to pay supposedly "inflated" prices for tickets shows that the ticket's face value is actually an underestimate of its worth, not that there is anything exploitative about the ticket reseller.

If I were a promoter wanting make the most out of my events, especially an annual event, I would let scalping be completely legal and open - in fact, I'd probably host a website dedicated to third-party ticket resale for my show, so that it'd be incredibly easy to monitor. Then I'd pay careful attention to what people are actually willing to pay for their tickets, and the next year, I'd know what price to sell them for. There wouldn't be very much scalping at all as a result, because the tickets would be sold for something very close to their true market value - all the money potentially to be made by scalping would be going into my pocket instead, and the fiendish professional scalper would be out of a job.
UHU
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 08:08AM
JK8SS
GG
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 08:27AM
Yeah, it's all good Fish until you're the one stuck outside of a show you really want to see and have to pay 3 times the face value. Scalping is wrong because most scalpers buy tickets with the sole purpose of jacking the price up and making a profit. This creates a situation where true fans are now either forced to pay a ridiculous amount or to miss a show. But there's really no use trying to explain all this to someone like you cause obviously your greed shows through. May you one day miss your favorite artist because scalpers have snatched up all the tickets and you can't afford the $400 for a ticket.
jbwelda
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:04AM
"true fans" in most cases get themselves down to the box office and buy the ticket first day of sales and dont have to resort to scalpers. its only the laggers who have to use scalpers (and this typically is only for those really huge shows like rolling stones etc...rotr for example you could have bought a ticket anytime in the past 3 months right from the box office).

i dont think fish is advocating scalping, at least not professional "ticket brokering", hes just thinking of the facts of life.

speaking of which, heres a fact of life: some people, no matter how much time they have to do something, are somehow never prepared to do that something until after the last possible date to do so. scalpers serve these people; the solution? be prepared and follow through. dont let "too late" be your cry.

more to fish's point: if youve bought a ticket in good intentions and then cant go, i dont see why its necessary to sell the ticket for less than or what youve spent. hell, you *should* be rewarded for being on the ball if others are in a position where they were not. however this can become a vicious cycle if people buy up loads of tickets with the intent on selling them for more when they sell out. and as many have seen when they try to pull this sort of thing for personal gain, they often get left with a fistful of worthless tickets and a lot of pavement pounding to try to get them off at the last moment for whatever they can get.

i dont think i agree with fish's analysis of how one could track scalper sales and price tickets accordingly. its not the run-of-the-mill buyer paying scalper prices and you will end up pricing your potential customers out of the market unless that market is extremely deep (eg: your show sells out immediately leaving masses of people clamoring for entry, again, the stones are the only ones i know of who can seemingly be in this position consistently, and thats with largely "beat the scalpers" prices to begin with.

one love
jah bill
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:09AM
Babylon System? Fish I hear your capitalistic argument, supply vs. demand but I thought most of us were trying to escape this system or the worst parts of it. It just irks me when people purchase "Reggae Festival" tix with the sole intention of raising the price, sometimes doubling, for sale down the road. The worst offenders are the ones who buy four tix sell 2 on ebay to pay for the other two and then show up at the festival chanting down the babylon system. If it is what you got to do to get to the show then ? But it is much easier for me to do a little work, save a little money and enjoy the festival without extorting a brother or sister of the scene.
Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:12AM
"until you're the one stuck outside of a show you really want to see and have to pay 3 times the face value"

I've skipped shows that I was interested in seeing because the face value of the ticket, let alone the scalped value, was too high. If I want to go to a show, I also make sure I'm sorted out ahead of time instead of waiting until I show up at the door. Just think about what you're paying for - not only a ticket to a sold-out show, but a last-minute ticket. And just like you pay extra for a last-minute plane ticket, or for a last-minute SNWMF ticket for that matter, it's not surprising that a ticket at the gate costs more.

"This creates a situation where true fans are now either forced to pay a ridiculous amount or to miss a show"

Scalpers don't sell tickets for "ridiculous" amounts of money unless fans are willing to pay. The fact that a fan is willing to shell out so much money means that the ticket is truly a valuable thing, and that it was (financially, at least) unwise of the promotor to sell it for so low in the first place.

"But there's really no use trying to explain all this to someone like you cause obviously your greed shows through."

I've resold one extra ticket in my life. I paid about twenty five or thirty dollars for it expecting that someone else would be going, but it turned out they weren't able to make it. I passed it off to someone outside the show for ten dollars less than I paid, because I didn't need it and I didn't feel like hanging around outside trying to hustle. I also never bothered to hassle the ten bucks out of the friend who probably should have paid me for it.

"May you one day miss your favorite artist because scalpers have snatched up all the tickets and you can't afford the $400 for a ticket."

That'd be a bummer. I'd probably kick myself for not buying a ticket early when my favorite artist was on the way through, and then go listen to CDs like I usually do anyways.
GG
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:14AM
I agree that no one should sell a ticket for less than face value if you have an extra. I've done it on many occasions myself. However, I can't bring myself to charge over $10 above face value. I just think of it as karma points or what have you. I also understand that some people don't get it together soon enough and sometimes for that you must pay but I still don't advocate penalizing people for it. I've experienced finding out via e-mail (through Pollstar notifications) about a show going on sale and immediately getting down to the box office only to find out that there was a 'secret' pre-sale the day before and it was sold out. So I stood out in front of the Ben Harper show hoping for a break and dealing with scumbags on the corner selling $35 tickets for $130. I waited until the show was just about starting and only through a stroke of luck and another underage woman's misfortune was I able to get in for slightly above what I would've paid and I'm a rabid fan. I didn't sit on my ass until it was too late but that's how it turned out anyway. And then to have the dirtbags on the corner who you could tell had absolutely no interest in the show and were only trying to make money. That's just f**ked up and therein lies the problem with scalping.
Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:24AM
"i dont think i agree with fish's analysis of how one could track scalper sales and price tickets accordingly. its not the run-of-the-mill buyer paying scalper prices and you will end up pricing your potential customers out of the market unless that market is extremely deep (eg: your show sells out immediately leaving masses of people clamoring for entry, again, the stones are the only ones i know of who can seemingly be in this position consistently, and thats with largely "beat the scalpers" prices to begin with."

That's true . . . you'd have to keep track of when people were paying said prices, and it would only make sense for things like certain sports events that sell out way ahead of time. I suppose if you wanted to cash in on the scalper market, you could always just scope out immediately pre-show ticket prices, then keep a few tickets on reserve for the latecomers for a little bit less than that . . . in fact, there are some shows that do just that. I think the Oakland Revels only sells the right-up-front seats immediately before the show, and not for cheap. That could be argued as being a bit unfair towards more on-the-ball people, though . . .
Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:36AM
"only to find out that there was a 'secret' pre-sale the day before and it was sold out"

Well, is that the fault of the scalpers or the show's promoters? And how did the scalpers find out about the presale? I think the promoter in that case is the one doing a disservice to their fans by lying about when tickets go on sale.

"dirtbags on the corner who you could tell had absolutely no interest in the show and were only trying to make money"

The real question is - how many other people do things pretty much just for money? How many people would go to their job if it didn't pay? I consider music corporation head honchos, for example, to be far more exploitative than ticket scalpers. Buying cheap and selling high is what retail is all about, and I don't see a scalper doing that as any worse than a used record or book dealer doing so. Maybe a few fans can't get in, but then, if the tickets were really all going for $135, it would have been just as easy for the promoter to make that ticket face value and still sell out the show - and then would the promoter be exploitative?


"capitalistic argument, supply vs. demand but I thought most of us were trying to escape this system or the worst parts of it"

I guess that's where I disagree with some people here - on exactly what the "worst parts" of a capitalist system are. I personally think that, for example, the secret pre-sale mentioned by GG is unfair. However, if everyone is given equal opportunity to buy tickets, then the final price that is reached through resale is simply the fair market value. Again, if the price is too high, nobody will pay . . .
jbwelda
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 09:42AM
>then keep a few tickets on reserve for the latecomers...only sells the right-up-
>front seats immediately before the show,

strangely enough, thats exactly what the rolling stones do, supposedly at keith richards expressed request: save the best tickets for day of show and then sell them for the price of the cheapest tickets. ive bought those myself twice and they were always in the first 10 rows...even first day of sale those rows were "not available". thats one of their strategies for beating the scalpers at their own game.

one love
jah bill
dirtweed
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 10:17AM
to buy tickets knowing that you are just going to "resell" (i.e.scalp) them is just plain wrong for the reason gg says - someone who really wants to go and who stood in line to get them will not be able to go because someone bought tickets to try to make a profit. these people suck. now if a situation comes up and you can't go to the show - how does that entitle you to make a small fortune?? just sell the tickets at face value or a small profit but to hold a bidding war is plain wrong. fish - you seem to think it is ok to charge whatever the market will bear. how do you feel about $5.00 gas?? scalpers suck plain and simple.
Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 10:33AM
"entitle you to make a small fortune?? just sell the tickets at face value or a small profit but to hold a bidding war is plain wrong"

What basically puzzles me about the anti-scalping sentiment is that "bidding wars," or free market trading in general, are allowed for most things. What is so different about tickets? They are a limited resource, just like most other resources, and just as easy to sell and resell.

"you seem to think it is ok to charge whatever the market will bear"

In most cases - that's right. For essentials, things are a little different; I would like to live in a world where everyone has access to food, shelter, education, and health care. But for luxury goods? For fancy cars, for records, for concert tickets, for fashionable clothes? If people are willing to pay, then you're only doing the smart thing by obliging them. If you underprice your goods, you'll sell out quickly and be left wishing you asked a little more for them . . .

As for $5 gas . . . well, I walk, bus, metro, train, and plane to most places I want to go, so as of yet high prices haven't bothered me. But as far as I'm concerned, gas in America is way, way cheap. Do you have any idea how much effort goes into extracting gasoline? How much expertise, manpower, money, and time it takes to set up a humongous middle-of-the-stormy-Baltic-Sea drilling platform, and then extract gasoline from deep underneath the ocean floor? Then think about shipping all that gas back to the US, extensively processing it through an enormous and extremely high-tech oil refinery, and distrubiting it in its various pure forms across the nation to keep local gas stations stocked. Now think about the fact that the resulting product of this colossal effort is cheaper by the gallon than milk, or beer, or probably some bottled water. I'm no fan of many practices of Big Oil, but give respect where respect is due: the fact that these people make such a hard-to-get resource so easily and cheaply available is pretty remarkable. And if we want these people to act environmentally and politically conscionable, then we shouldn't complain when prices go up, because "evil corporate practices" are part of what brings us cheap gas . . . same goes for organic or sustainable food. When you buy food from the agro-industrialists, there's an extra price you pay that doesn't show up on the receipt . . .
rustfan
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 10:35AM
Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 10:39AM
"strangely enough, thats exactly what the rolling stones do, supposedly at keith richards expressed request: save the best tickets for day of show and then sell them for the price of the cheapest tickets. ive bought those myself twice and they were always in the first 10 rows...even first day of sale those rows were "not available". thats one of their strategies for beating the scalpers at their own game."

Definately an interesting practice - I guess the only catch is that diehard fans who want a front-row seat have to gamble on it . . . but I guess for someone truly excited about seeing the Stones, buying another ticket as "insurance" (and maybe returning it or selling it once you get the good seat) is worthwhile.

Out of curiosity, JB, do you still check them when they come by?
dirtweed
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 11:32AM
a lot of thought to justify an unsavory practive. if you are not going - don't buy a ticket.
solid rock
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 11:51AM

hey Fish i woulda never pegged you as a free marketeer.

let me try this on you:

don't know if you're currently working, but let's say you get a job that pays you $8.00 an hour. but your boss finds out someone else needs you to do the same exact job, and sells your same hours of work to that other guy for $14.00 an hour, and keeps the difference.

hours of your time and labor are selling for more money, but you still get less.
jbwelda
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:07PM
>Out of curiosity, JB, do you still check them when they come by?

oh that depends. but with one overriding principle: if the stones are in town, i find it hard to not be there. that said, perhaps the most interesting and exciting show ive seen in many years was the stones "no security" show at the oakland arena and then at that theatre in los angeles a couple years ago. but i had "vip" passes to both of them so whats not to like?

>if you are not going - don't buy a ticket

heres a better one: if you dont have a ticket, dont go. that will pretty much solve the "scalper on site" problem.

as to solids question: the answer is, you quit and work for the other guy. short term employment only with that guy? then long term employment with your current boss has added benefits, aka "pay". you cannot judge on salary alone. same with ticket scalping: youre paying more for the benefit of not having to stand in line originally to get your ticket, in other words, its a true "convenience" charge.

one love
jah bill
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:21PM
"don't know if you're currently working, but let's say you get a job that pays you $8.00 an hour. but your boss finds out someone else needs you to do the same exact job, and sells your same hours of work to that other guy for $14.00 an hour, and keeps the difference."

I am working (although not at this exact moment, obviously). The problem in your example is not necessarily one of the market itself, but of information and access - if the other guy was able to find me, or I was able to find the other guy, I'd work for him for $13.50 an hour and we'd both be happy. I think these sorts of difficulties are the major problem with free markets as they exist now, and they're why I don't think the right-wingers who say "just trust the market, it will work out OK in the end" are necessarily to be trusted. Ideally, information would be widely available, I'd know the other guy was looking for my services, and GG would have known about the secret presale . . . this is part of why I consider the Internet to be a good thing.
But here's another thing: consider a recruiter or other middleman - someone who connects people who want jobs with people who need employees, and of course takes a cut for the time and effort put into this service. They're basically doing what you describe, although possibly for a somewhat more modest fee. Is that wrong? Someone is out there providing information and connecting people, and that's a valuable service . . . when this crosses the line into exploitation is a
tricky boundary to draw.


"i woulda never pegged you as a free marketeer."

Well, yes and no. Because of information and access issues, I don't think free markets are "always right" (another example: international companies are free to hire employees and buy supplies in whatever country they want, but the vast majority of employees can't offer their services and buy food in whatever country they want, hence a lot of problems with globalization). But I am libertarian in a lot of ways, and I think unless there's a really good reason to stop somebody from doing something, they should be allowed to do it (hence my belief that both gay marriage and Briggy's comment at the festival should be legal).

When you let people do what they want, free markets tend to happen . . . and I think that if you want to effect change in the world, what you need to do is tweak the markets to behave in a more desirable way, or create new ones, rather than pretend they're not there or make them illegal. A good example is environmental regulation . . . straight government decrees, quotas, limits, etc. can be pretty dubiously effective. Market-based systems (like tradable pollution credits) can be very helpful . . .
solid rock
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:30PM

> The problem in your example is not necessarily one of the market itself, but of
> information and access - if the other guy was able to find me, or I was able to
> find the other guy, I'd work for him for $13.50 an hour and we'd both be happy.

Fish you're changing my premise to suit your argument.

i was asking you -- if you found out that someone else was making extra money off your back, without you getting any, would you like it?

would you shrug and say "well, that's the market!"?


doesn't sound like it. sounds like you would intervene, and would want to reorganize the situation to where you could assert some control over who gets what out of your sweat.

i believe that regulation and controls are "necessary evils" because man has repeatedly proven willingness to take advantage of others... of the sweat of others..

"sittin' in your church on Sunday / thinking who you're gonna screw Monday.."

VC ~ "By His Deeds"
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:30PM
"if the stones are in town, i find it hard to not be there. that said, perhaps the most interesting and exciting show ive seen in many years was the stones "no security" show at the oakland arena and then at that theatre in los angeles a couple years ago. but i had "vip" passes to both of them so whats not to like?"

VIP passes, huh? Not bad . . . the only live Stones I've seen was when I went with my family to the Bridges to Babylon tour in Oakland, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. The music was enjoyable and the pyrotechnics were spectacular . . . and it was touching to see a tear go rolling down Charlie Watts' cheek after he got a long standing ovation that dwarfed the cheering given to the other band members. Don't know how common that is, though, it being my only Stones experience.

Also out of curiosity - did you also find the idea of a tour accompanying a live album documenting a previous tour kind of funny?
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:38PM
Ah, ROTR could end the scapling and keep this money for themselves by simply raising the ticket price each year until they just about sell out on the Friday of the festival. This maybe what the're doing as it appears the $150 face value this year resulted in them selling out at least a month later then normal. Of course, this is kinda bad for the average fan as he/she will have to pay more no matter when you buy your ticket, whereas before, the slackers who were late buying had to pay the inflated price to the scalper.

I suggest that anyone who doesnt have a ticket and wants to go should not panic and should not support the scaplers...just go up there to the area on Thursday or Friday and buy a ticket from
from someone whose friends didnt make it for whatever reason, or from a hapless scapler who has extras that he couldnt sell due to his inflated prices. Ive have always seen tickets for sale there at this time at little over face value, maybe $50 over face value and sometimes even less then face value...truly free market at work, let it work in your favor.

I would guess at least 5% of the tickets sold in advance are resold
at the gate as people can't make it at the last minute...thats 500 tickets.

The only done side is there is a small risk you cant find a ticket at a decent price, but Im pretty sure you can always get one(not 100% guaranteed of course, but neither is tomorrow)
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:52PM
"i was asking you -- if you found out that someone else was making extra money off your back, without you getting any, would you like it?

would you shrug and say "well, that's the market!"?

doesn't sound like it. sounds like you would intervene, and would want to reorganize the situation to where you could assert some control over who gets what out of your sweat."

So I worked, more or less doing clerical work, at an environmental engineering firm last summer. My time and services were billed to our clients at something like thirty or forty dollars an hour. Not surprisingly, my hourly wage was less than half of that. This is pretty much exactly the situation you describe.

Was I mad about it? On the contrary, I was quite happy with the arrangement. I agreed to work for a company for a wage that I considered quite reasonable, and knew I could go to work every day, put in eight hours, and get my pay. If I had to seek out the clients on my own, I'd spend more time looking for small amounts of work than the extra wage would justify. If I was getting a much smaller wage, then maybe I'd do what JB suggested - quit and work for the other guy. Asserting that sort of control - whether it's quitting your job to change employers or selling for crazy money the vinyl you picked up years ago for pennies - is what the free market is all about.

As for making extra money off my back - that's the reason they hired me in the first place, isn't it? Companies have to make money, and so they have to make more money off of each employee than they pay that employee. And it's not like I'm "not getting any" - I get a wage I agreed to work for. Likewise, the concert ticket venders get to sell out their show at their initial asking price - essentially, they get 100% of the money they "asked for." That's not bad at all. Whether the scalper sells their ticket to someone else, or goes to the show himself, makes no difference in terms of profits seen by the promotor. If they want a bigger piece of the pie, then raise the ticket price, or make some (priced as you see fit) admission available at the door to the latecomers.
jbwelda
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 12:58PM
>i was asking you -- if you found out that someone else was making extra money
>off your back, without you getting any, would you like it?

thats clearly ridiculous...someone is doing this all the time. its called work and the person/entity doing it is who you work for; they take your labor and make money off it one way or another.

to fish: at this point, a lot about the stones is "funny", including why i feel the need to go check them whenever they are in town. but i usually dont question the feeling. as for "no security" tour, yes it was to "back" a live album from the previous tour but that was on paper only...i guess they need a theme. it was more a "back to the roots" kind of tour.

one love
jah bill
solid rock
Re: the fuss
July 12, 2004 12:59PM

duh Fish.

i understand billing rates.


you're not responding to my questions or my point.

if you decide to though, they're still all there.. above.


in the meantime...
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 01:12PM
I guess I'm confused, because I thought I was responding to your questions. If you could clarify, I'd appreciate it . . .

Still, I'll sum up the way I feel about this sort of thing: if I provide a service or product, and I get paid what I consider a fair sum for what I've provided, then what the other person does with it afterwards is more or less their business (unless I put some conditions on the sale). If I'm holding a show and someone wants to go and sell their ticket after the show has sold out, I still got what I asked for in exchange for that ticket. Anybody who buys a ticket obviously feels they'll get some benefit from doing so, and if that benefit happens to be financial, it doesn't lessen what I received. If anything, the presence of scalpers isn't "exploiting" me - it's pointing out that there's a particular market associated with my show that I could make good money by tapping into.
dirtweed
Re: the fuss
July 12, 2004 01:18PM
geez jahbill - rather harsh "if you don't have a ticket don't go". also rather simplistic. at most shows there will be people who have tickets to sell. of course there are the scalpers and then those who perhaps bought tickets for friends who can't go or whatever. so there will be tickets available. i certainly am no saint but whenever i have extra tickets i sell them for face value even though i could ask for more. the thanks that i receive for not gouging for the ticket is my "profit". in that kind of a situation i would rather "lose out" on some money then screw somebody who couldn't get a ticket through regular outlet (probably because scalpers got their share of tickets). self-esteem should be more important than money.
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 12, 2004 10:58PM
tem bellyful but we hungry
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 01:11PM
Wow - talk about a heated debate! It's not as bad as it used to be, now that ticket "caps" are in place (last I checked you could only get 8 at a time for any given show - usually less for these festival type shows). I remember in the old days - performers would sell out an event, mutiple nights, in like 2 hours! Of course - sometimes the scalpers would misread the market - and they'd be selling tix for less than face value just to get rid of them. Of course - shows were on average $8 back then - so even if you were paying double it wasn't too bad...
Irie_i
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 04:59PM
Scalpers exploit the general public that wants to experience something they love. I deal with scalpers in england all the time because I support ARSENAL FC and every game is sold out. But get off the tube and you can find plenty of tickets at 3x to 10x the face value. Thats just wrong, why should a scalper make money for a crappy service that they provide. It is not a service it is a scam. They should not make money off of an event that they do not care about, have no affiliation, did not help set up and screw people out of enjoying. It is criminal. The only problem is WE will always buy from a scalper if we really want to see it. Hell i buy constantly from scalpers and contribute to the business, but I do not have to like it.
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 05:13PM
At ROTR last year, tickets were being sold outside the gate on Friday @ face value. Matter of fact, I had an extra ticket I needed to get rid of...the person I met in Willits who promised to show & buy it off me at face value didn't show. So after standing outside for a few hours trying to make my money back (no profit), I gave up & decided to take the loss of money over the loss of music.
So goes the risk...

But now, if you have to pay a little extra to a guy/gal who bought their tickets months in advance because you decided that weekend you wanted to make the show, you don't have much to complain about. Then again, that depends on the "service change" involved.
jbwelda
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 05:14PM
then dont buy from them. end of problem...now self control becomes the problem.

one love
jah bill
J-BIRD
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 05:36PM
DO YOU REALLY BELIEVE THE CRAP THAT YOU JUST SAID. I'VE BEEN GOING TO ROTR FOR 8 YRS. EVERY YEAR THE TIX PRICES GO UP. NO DISREPECT TO PEOPLE PRODUCTIONS, BUT THEIR MAKING MILLIONS OF $$$. WHY SHOULD SOMEONE PAY 300.00 A TIX FROM A PERSON TRYING TO MAKE CRAZY MONEY. I LOVE WHAT YOU SAID ABOUT THE CONCERT TIX BEING UNDERESTIMATE OF ITS WORTH. WHAT A CRAP OF ****.I'M SORRY THAT IS NOT A DIRECT EFFECT ON EACH OTHER. WOULD YOU PAY $300 FOR A TIX DUMBASS!!!!!!!!!
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 07:18PM
"EVERY YEAR THE TIX PRICES GO UP"
"I LOVE WHAT YOU SAID ABOUT THE CONCERT TIX BEING UNDERESTIMATE OF ITS WORTH. WHAT A CRAP OF ****.I'M SORRY THAT IS NOT A DIRECT EFFECT ON EACH OTHER. WOULD YOU PAY $300 FOR A TIX DUMBASS!!!!!!!!!"

No, I wouldn't pay $300 for a ticket. But here's a little basic economics for you: if people buy something, they think it's worth the money. Otherwise, they wouldn't buy it. Now, if people are willing to buy tickets for more money than the promoter is charging, that means that for them, the true value of the ticket is higher than the face value.
Look at it from the promoter's point of view: they sold out their show a month ahead of time. That means they probably could have raised the price another $10 or $20, maybe even more, and still sold out. Not having ever been to ROTR, I don't know how many tickets they sell - but $10 a ticket turns into $10,000 per 1,000 people who show up, and I imagine it's a crowd of a few thousand at least. Since they can increase the price and still make money, they are selling their tickets for less than what they "should" (from an economic point of view) be selling them for. That means don't be surprised if the prices go up next year, too, because it's just the smart thing to do from the promotor's side of things.


"They should not make money off of an event that they do not care about, have no affiliation, did not help set up and screw people out of enjoying. It is criminal."

Have you ever bought a stock in a company? It's the exact same thing - you buy something you think you can resell to somebody else at a higher price. And although I agree high-priced scalping isn't "nice," there's no rule out there that you have to care deeply about what you're selling - if you're on the ball and see an opportunity to make money, it behooves you economically to take it. Everyone wants to eat, and have some nice things if they can, and scalping - even if it deprives poorer fans of the opportunity to see the show - at least isn't causing physical harm to anybody. In my book that makes it a lot nicer than, say, selling cigarettes. That's why I find it strange that there's such a hue and cry over it as "unfair," when the exact same practice is applied to many other things on a routine basis with no fuss . . .
As for your Arsenal example - if you and other fans are willing to pay three to ten times ticket face value, that just means the tickets ar worth a lot more than face value. If you think the scalped prices are unfair, then as Jah Bill says, just don't pay them . . . it's not very fun, but it's the reality when the ticket's face value is "too low." Fans refusing to pay, tickets rising in face value, or if the promotor is very fan-friendly, new controls being added (maybe requiring each ticket to be bought in someone's name, and then checking ID at the door) are the ways that scalping will actually end . . .
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 07:39PM
Fish wrote:


> Not having ever been to ROTR, I don't
> know how many tickets they sell -

They sell about 10,000 tickets and another 4000
are given to vounteers and people in the community.
These are rough numbers and not exact.

Many of these 4000 tickets are resold to make some
quick cash for the community members so they will
continue to support the festival, despite it slow movement
towards a festival of decadence.

At 14,000, the festival is overcrowded and very uncomfortable.
It use to have a limit of 10,000 when it was a non-profit venture.

As previously noted by Chimino and me, dont support the scalpers, buy your ticket at around face value at the festival a few days before the event and put a hurt on the scalpers.
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 13, 2004 08:52PM
Thanks for the info, Rhythmwize. That's huge - no wonder they're jacking up the price, not many people are going to forgo a ticket for $10 more and that brings them in an extra hundred grand . . .

I know the change in scene at ROTR has been discussed before, but I'm curious - do you think that the "rave on the river" aspect is a result of decisions made by the promoters? Or is it just a change in the crowd that would be difficult to control?
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 07:35AM
Curious - everyone keeps acting like ROTR has become nothing but a bunch of crazed partiers that don't care for the music - just come to get high. Personally, I think 10 years ago it was MUCH crazier - there were full-on sound systems every 30 feet and at night nearly EVERYONE was trippin on something. It IS a lot more crowded now - but I think you all are just getting older! Hell, last year at 3:00 AM on any of the nights it was fairly peaceful and you could actually sleep. That was never the case even 5 years ago. Remember - back in the day it was only a one day thing as well...
dirtweed
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 09:49AM
it is just plain wrong to buy a ticket for the sole purpose of reselling it to make a profit. wrong because the scalper is buying tickets that someone who does want to go will not get. wrong because the show becomes too expensive for many to go to (having to pay scalper prices). and wrong because it is bad karma. fish - scalping tickets is nothing like buying stocks or anything else. it is known that stocks will be bought/sold at higher/lower prices - thats the nature of the beast. making a buck may be the american way but does that make it right?? the american way includes many unsavory activities - is that ok since it is the american way?. quit justifying this seedy practice. jahbill sez - "don"t buy them" but why should a person be in that situation. if the scalpers hadn't bought their tickets there would be that many more tickets available for those who really want to go. i can't believe this practice is being defended.
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 10:10AM
Greetings Board,
Scalping/selling at face value or less is good karma and legal the NBA, NCAA, NFL can not bust you but if you sell your ticket for more, the ticket brokers get upset as they pay alot to the people at the capitol,
ROR - nuff said for the oldest reggae fest,
It seem that some of you have not been or forgot what large festivals are about 20,000-300,000 people with ROR being great music and setting even with 20,000 it's still better than Bonnaroo, Summer san. L-polusa (oops, bad example), Vans Warped tour(the vert ramp ruled and second stage!!)
Remember the US fest in SoCal. or Cal. Jam's, Mtn. Air's, or any large stadum show, how it was like with 50,000-150,000 people ,,,, ROR is not that bad ,,
Live for the Music and support all music
remember, So how can you not learn if your ears are so close to the brain!!
One Love
allan

Fish
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 12:18PM
"it is just plain wrong to buy a ticket for the sole purpose of reselling it to make a profit. wrong because the scalper is buying tickets that someone who does want to go will not get. wrong because the show becomes too expensive for many to go to (having to pay scalper prices). and wrong because it is bad karma"

I'll agree that buying lots of tickets with the sole intent of reselling them isn't a very kind or socially productive thing to do. It does change who goes to shows from a "who gets there first" to a "who's willing to pay" basis, either of which is valid, but of course fans and promotors have a preference and scalpers do disrupt that. Another count against large-scale scalping is that inevitably some tickets will fall by the wayside and go unused, leaving some people out of luck . . . and of course, your "job" isn't a very fulfilling one. I personally don't care much for any sort of job where all you do is buy low and sell high, whether it's stocks or scalping, but that's just my own standards of fulfillment rather than a moral judgement.

The reason why I asked this question in the first place is how hard everyone came down on the guy who had extra tickets and wanted to sell to the highest bidder. I don't know what circumstances led to the tickets being extras, and whether they were bought with the intent of selling, but to my mind, selling a spare ticket to a sold-out show to the highest bidder isn't wrong. You've got a commodity that may be pretty scarce, and if lots of people want it, then it's just an opportunity. . . This forum may not be the place to do it, but personally, if one guy offers me face value and the other guy offers me twenty bucks extra, and I don't know the people or have any other reason for choosing one over the other, it's not so tough a decision who to sell to . ..
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 01:53PM
Fishhead ask:

"I know the change in scene at ROTR has been discussed before, but I'm curious - do you think that the "rave on the river" aspect is a result of decisions made by the promoters? Or is it just a change in the crowd that would be difficult to control?"

Ive been goin every year since 1991 with a couple exceptions.

I would say its mostly the latter...the promoters haven't really done anything to attract a different kind of crowd...its partly that the older hippie type crowd just got older an older and stopped going, thats part of it. Another factor is when the rave scene got shutdown they
discovered ROTR and started attending in bigger numbers. Then all the partiers who wernt really into reggae starting coming and many hardcore reggae people didnt feel like tolerating them anymore and stopped coming so thats where its at today.

One thing I have noticed is the promoters have changed their standards regarding what artists they book now. Hardcore DH artists like Bounty Killa were not booked in the 90's as it was pretty much conscious roots and culture only. That totally "conscious" concept is currently out the window.

Im out
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 14, 2004 08:20PM
Killa fi all season!

Luckily Bounty (not to mention Luci etc) will be playing SF shows so I can catch him & other acts without paying that ridiculous $150 ticket price.
Sis April
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 15, 2004 05:57AM
Since ROTR sold out I checked on line and tix are posted at $380 each.
With so many nice shows coming up-- all the renegade shows and Trinity Tribal Stomp, Earthdance, Reggae in the Park, etc I will be just fine with missing ROTR this year. Nice line up though--- but the sardine style people crunch is more than I can handle.
Re: Ticket scalping - why the fuss?
July 15, 2004 08:18AM
Sis April wrote:

> I will be just fine with missing ROTR this year. Nice line up
> though--- but the sardine style people crunch is more than I
> can handle.

LOL...yes, think open can of sardines on the stove with the hot oil just bubbling a lickle.
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