National Consumers League

Statement regarding Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster’s announcement on Ticketmaster agreement

February 12, 2015

Contact: NCL Communications, Ben Klein (202) 835-3323, benk@nclnet.org

Washington, DC—The National Consumers League (NCL), America’s oldest consumer group, applauds Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster for working to improve Ticketmaster’s disclosure of nontransferable, restricted tickets. This form of ticketing, called paperless or credit-card-entry tickets by the live event industry, requires consumers to buy tickets with a credit or debit card and then use that same card and photo ID to gain entry to the event.

“With restricted tickets, live event fans are often unaware that the tickets they are purchasing are tied to their credit card and are nontransferable. NCL believes consumers should always have the choice of transferable tickets, but General Koster’s efforts help ensure that fans are at least aware, before making a purchase, that their tickets are nontransferable.  No consumer should face losing 100 percent of their hard earned money because their plans changed and they cannot resell or even give away their tickets.

An additional concern, not addressed in the agreement with Ticketmaster, is the impact that paperless ticketing has on unbanked and underbanked consumers. According to the Federal Reserve, 34.4 million U.S. households have no or limited access to traditional banking services, such as debit or credit cards. By requiring a credit or debit card as proof of purchase, paperless ticketing can lock millions of unbanked and underbanked out of the live event marketplace.

NCL advises consumers to always read the fine print before purchasing tickets online as part of our Consumer Guide to Buying Tickets Online."

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About the National Consumers League

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 www.nclnet.org.