September 27, 2023
Media contact: National Consumers League – Melody Merin, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202-207-2831
WASHINGTON, DC – Testifying before a Congressional committee, the National Consumers League (NCL) today urged support for comprehensive ticketing reform legislation to fix a “rigged” live event industry. NCL, America’s oldest consumer and worker advocacy organization, described how the November 2022 meltdown of Ticketmaster’s ticketing system during the on-sale for Taylor Swift’s Era’s Tour exposed the “ugly underbelly” of the industry.
“There has never been a better time to reform live event ticketing,” said John Breyault, NCL’s Vice President for Public Policy, Telecommunications, and Fraud. “While the Taylor Swift meltdown may have been an anomaly, it exposed the ugly underbelly of a live event industry that is rigged to maximize profits for a select few and frustration for everyone else.”
Of the three event ticketing bills considered by the subcommittee, Breyault called the “BOSS and SWIFT ACT of 2023,” sponsored by Representatives Bill Pascrell (D-NJ9), Frank Pallone (D-NJ6), Julia Brownley (D-CA26), and Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) “the single most comprehensive pro-fan and pro-competition ticketing legislation before Congress.” NCL supports the BOSS and SWIFT ACT because it includes a range of ticket industry reforms, including requiring better disclosure of ticket refund policies, shedding daylight on ticket “holdbacks” that siphon tickets away from the average fan, clamping down on unauthorized speculative ticket sales, and helping protect consumers from Ticketmaster’s anti-competitive efforts to extend its monopoly into the secondary ticket market.
NCL also voiced support for two other ticketing bills: Representatives Gus Bilirakis’ (R-FL12) and Jan Schakowsky’s (D-IL9) TICKET ACT, which would mandate all-in pricing of tickets and better disclosure of speculative ticket sales, as well as draft legislation that would ban speculative ticketing outright, while carving out ticket-buying services.
In addition to the ticketing bills, NCL testified in support of Representative David Valadao’s (D-CA22) Online Dating Safety Act of 2023 which would notify users of online dating apps that someone they messaged on the app was banned; Representative Young Kim’s (R-CA40) No Hidden Fees on Extra Expenses for Stays Act, which would mandate all-in pricing in the hotel and short-term lodging industries; and Representative Lisa McClain’s (R-MI9) and Representative Mary Peltola’s (D-AK) WIPPES Act, which would require manufacturers of cleaning wipes to label their cleaning wipes as non-flushable in order to protect wastewater infrastructure and consumers’ plumbing systems from damage.
NCL’s written testimony is available here.
About the National Consumers League (NCL)
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit nclnet.org.