July 5, 2012 8:35
Reading and Leeds organiser calls for ticket touts to be banned at festivals
Melvin Benn criticises the government for not taking action over resale of tickets for gigs and festivals
In an article for The Independent , Benn – who also organises Latitude festival, says the government should restrict secondary ticketing for festivals in the same way it has for the Olympics – where tickets can be re-sold at face value with permission from Olympic authorities.
"I don't, unlike ticket touts, want to see ordinary people priced out of going to see concerts, plays or matches in a time of austerity," he wrote. He added:
I also believe it's very unfair that the profits made on secondary ticket sales go not to the organisations that take on the risk of mounting cultural events like Latitude, which brings together hundreds of bands, theatre companies, writers and artists, nor to the charities we work with. Instead, they go straight into the pockets of touts, who in turn then pay no tax on their profits.
Ticket touting is illegal for football matches, but the market for secondary ticket sales for live music events is unregulated and tickets can be re-sold for however much touts can get for them.
Benn, along with some music industry representatives, have called for a 10 per cent profit cap on the resale of tickets to avoid sellers charging fees way beyond the face value of a ticket.
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