New anti-ticket touting initiative announced

However UK government has ‘no plans’ to outlaw touts

The UK government has announced its intention to “squeeze” ticket touting out of live music, theatre and sport.

The move follows a meeting held yesterday (April 26) between Tessa Jowell the Secretary Of State For Culture, Media And Sport and representatives from the live music industry, including Carling Weekend: Reading and Leeds festival organisers Mean Fiddler and the Concert Promoters Association, along with parties representing theatre, sport and ticket agencies.

Though the government indicated it has no plans to legislate against touting, the Secretary Of State explained: “I want to see ticket agencies squeezing ticket touts out of business to protect genuine fans from being frozen out of the market.”

The “ticket tout summit” identified a series of measures that event organisers and ticket agencies will look to voluntarily adopt.

These included limiting the number of tickets an individual can buy, establishing an effective returns policy for unwanted tickets and asking “secondary agencies”, like online auction sites, to provide clear information about the original price of tickets that are being sold.

“We need to strike a balance between stamping out organised touts who buy in bulk and the real fan who for one reason or another decides they can’t go to an event and need to sell on their ticket,” a spokesman for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport told BBC News.

The government added that it hoped fans would boycott sellers or agencies that tried to rip off fans, while the concert industry will “blacklist” persistent touts.

A second ticket tout summit is expected to take place in July where a Code Of Conduct to deal with ticket touting will be drawn up.

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