SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Bill Quirk (D-Hayward) introduced a bill today that would prevent ticketing companies, like Ticketmaster, from allowing ticket scalpers to buy up large quantities of tickets and reselling them at inflated prices – sometimes as high as thirty times the ticket’s face value.
Investigative reports from 2018 revealed that Ticketmaster marketed its TradeDesk ticket resales platform directly to ticket scalpers at a conference in Las Vegas. TradeDesk representatives advertised the capability of TradeDesk to circumvent state limits on the amount of tickets that can be purchased before additional consumer protections kick in.
“Ticketmaster is the biggest player in tickets to live events. Some have described it as a monopoly,” Assemblymember Quirk said. “When Ticketmaster takes advantage of its position and lets scalpers drive up the prices people pay to attend shows – that is unacceptable. It is important we protect our consumers, and not let big companies abuse their power.”
AB 1032 expands existing penalties on using software to circumvent protections on bulk purchases of tickets. Current statute primarily targets third-party bots used to scan webpages hundreds of times a minute. With AB 1032, these protections will include software or services offered by the primary ticket seller, such as Ticketmaster.
“It shouldn’t matter if scalpers are using custom-made bots or if Ticketmaster is letting them use TradeDesk,” continued Assemblymember Quirk. “These practices should not be allowed. With AB 1032 we are going to put the concert-goer back at the center of ticket sales.”
AB 1032 has not been referred to committee.