Bruce Springsteen ticket prices ripped by New Jersey Congressman

New Jersey Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. have launched an attack on Ticketmaster over a controversial pricing scheme for Bruce Springsteen tickets that require answers to three questions before the end of the month.

Pascrell says he has been inundated with complaints from constituents who faced the prospect of pay more than $4,500 to attend upcoming shows, with some under the impression that there would be no cheaper options. Both Ticketmaster and Springsteen’s manager has since defended the strategy, known asdynamic pricing.”

The congressman also supports legislation to reform the ticket market, adding that he is acting on behalf of music fans who “should be able to enjoy live entertainment without … practices that cheat consumers.”

In a letter to Ticketmaster CEO Michael Rapino, Pascrell says that “your company claims that this system allows artists and event organizers to fairly determine the ‘true market value’ of tickets,” but in reality, the official Platinum Seats program “has led to, that fans are paying exorbitant prices.Furthermore, the fine print in your program allows additional amounts or fees to be “added to the already inflated prices.”

When preparing to buy online, fans “could see tickets disappear from the primary marketplace website as if purchased, only to reappear at higher prices,” Pascrell continued. “Fans logging into a general ticket sale are only able to purchase tickets that were purchased during the morning presale and then listed at higher prices on your secondary marketplace, which uses the same platform and is almost indistinguishable from your primary marketplace.”

He argued that marketplace reforms were “desperately needed” and that Ticketmaster, as the market leader, could introduce such reforms “at any time.” If they did, those changes “would probably become the industry standard overnight.” Instead, Pascrell accused Ticketmaster of choosing “not to act responsibly, instead prolonging the frustration and confusion of consumers.”

Pascrell then concluded with several questions. “For Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s 2023 tour: a.) How many shows will be played at venues owned, operated or exclusively booked by Ticketmaster? b.) How many of these shows are Ticketmaster the primary ticket seller or the exclusive ticket seller?” he wrote.

“Please provide specific data and any supporting details [your] statement that these prices and formats are ‘consistent with industry standards for top performers,'” Pascrell said. “If your company informs customers how many tickets will be available for sale, at what time and how they will be priced, then they can make informed purchases [decisions]?”

Pascrell attracted many reactions, including a Bruce Springsteen fan from the UK who listed the price of tickets bought between 1981 and 2016. He said his 11th ticket cost more than all 10 shows he previously attended. Others reported that they experienced similar premium pricing strategies when trying to purchase tickets to other artists’ shows.

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