Ticket Touts

Looking on eBay I can see that my tickets for the Pixies could be sold for up to 100 pounds (nearly 200 US dollars). Some of the buyers have decent feedback ratings so I don’t think it’s a case of people creating dummy accounts to mess up the touts.

That’s ridiculous. I bought four tickets for 115 pounds. I could sell them for nearly 400 pounds and I’d have done about 15 minutes work (including entering on eBay and posting the tickets) maybe 30 minutes if I include a walk to the post office to send the tickets recorded delivery. If I had 10 credit cards I could conceivably have bought 40 tickets. Then my profit would be 4000 pounds for not much more work, certainly less than an hour. If I did that for Reading Festival, Glastonbury Festival and any other events where tickets are guaranteed to sell out then I could give up my job and just work for about an hour or two every few weeks!

That leads me to two questions really. 1) What is going to be done about this? Neither organisers nor fans want it like this. And 2) Why don’t ticket sellers make their tickets more expensive if people are willing to pay that much? It’s surely not altruism – companies like Mean Fiddler or Ticketmaster don’t know what that means.

4 Replies to “Ticket Touts”

  1. Have missed out on getting tickets for all four announced Pixies gigs because of those damned ticket touts.
    If anyone needs to get rid of any spares – please contact this genuine fan at:



  2. But that’s my point. For certain events ticket sellers could price their tickets much *higher*. But they don’t. Why not?

  3. Interesting information on this from Seth Godin in his presentation at Columbia Records. It comes at 43:05.

    “When I was in business school Bill Graham came to talk to us and I asked him: ‘Springsteen is coming to town and you are going to sell out in 4 minutes. Why not charge more?’ and he said: ‘We have a monopoly on concerts in San Francisco and if we charged the amount it would take to maximize profit we would use up all the money of all the concert goers and next week when we had another concert they wouldn’t go.'”.

    Seth finds this line of reasoning fairly unbelievable, as do I. So I’m still looking for an answer to this one.

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