Secondary ticket websites promise to become more transparent

Buyers will be informed of ticket's face value, seat location and seller's name under new rules

Secondary ticketing websites have been told that they must be more transparent in a bid to stop touts from reselling tickets at inflated prices.

After the government backed legislation to protect fans from fraud on the secondary ticketing market, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said it had taken action to ensure that people who bought concert, sports and theatre tickets were given better information about any charges and restrictions.

As a result, the four main ticketing sites – Seatwave, Viagogo, StubHub, and Get Me In – have said they will expand on the information they currently provide.

“We are always happy to listen to recommendations about the way we display information on our website and we will be making these changes in due course,” Viagogo said in a statement.

The government made a U-turn last month when it voted to change the law relating to the resale of tickets. Conservative peer Lord Moynihan tabled an amendment to the consumer rights bill that will ensure that fans buying tickets from online companies will know exact details of what they are buying.

Details which will be legally required to be provided by ticketing companies include the row, seat, face value, age restrictions and name of the ticket’s original seller, none of which are currently required by law to be provided. It is hoped that these measures will help stamp out the sale of counterfeit tickets.

“One of the major reasons why you can’t get tickets for high-demand events as a member of the public is because there’s specialised software available to touts which sweeps up the supply within a nanosecond of them going on sale,” Lord Moynihan said. “Then those tickets are made available on the secondary market at sometimes five or 10 times the price. From now on that process is restricted, because you have to have the seat number, row number and so on.”

The amendment, expected to be made law within three months, also puts a duty on culture secretary Sajid Javid to review the entire secondary ticketing market within the next year.