back to article Regulator sniffs around Live Nation, Ticketmaster merger

The UK’s competition watchdog is continuing to probe a possible merger between Ticketmaster and Live Nation, to determine whether such a deal would stifle competition in the live music market. The Competition Commission confirmed in a statement yesterday that the inquiry group tasked with investigating the proposed merger, led …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    "even worse"

    Exactly, the current situation is basically a way of ripping off fans. The fees added by ticketmaster are a joke.

  2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Acquired Savant Syndrome ..... Alien String Strain.

    "The UK’s competition watchdog is continuing to probe a possible merger between Ticketmaster and Live Nation, to determine whether such a deal would stifle competition in the live music market."

    MeThinks a Virtual Union would Energise Competition in the Live Theatre Market .....Reintroducing Very Shakespearean Concepts for Live Projects and NonEntity State Actors. ...... for Total Informational Awareness TherapeutICQs ........ Virile Viral VXXXXine and AIMedication. A Recombinant Retro Viral.

    I wonder what Mr Pratchett would say?

  3. SynnerCal

    So TM doesn't have a monopoly now?

    So the Compy quango is looking "to determine whether such a deal would stifle competition in the live music market"

    More importantly, what's the competition in the live music market to which they're referring? Last couple of times I've tried to book tickets, the options have been:

    (a) buy from touts;

    (b) buy from other fans;

    (c) buy from Ticketmaster;

    (d) buy from the venue (only some allow this) who basically buy from Ticketmaster, and then charge you a 'handling charge' on top of Ticketmaster's prices.

    As far as I can tell - in the UK at least - Ticketmaster have a near monopoly on the major gigs, and a pretty sizable slice of the medium level too, (but maybe I'm just unlucky and it's just the area I live in?). And the result of this is that Ticketmaster seem to feel that they can charge pretty much what they like - the last stadium gig I went to, the kickbacks to Ticketmaster (admin charge, credit card fee, etc) amounted to more than 10% of the total ticket price - this is downright ludicrous when all they've got to do is take your money, and then post you out a couple of bits of paper..

    Okay, they might argue "value added" services, but as far as I can tell all they've done for me is send out a weekly list of tickets available (which is actually quite useful) and then sign me up for some ticket eBay (for which I presume they collect a fee for each transaction) which I definitely didn't want. I'm on Live Nation's email list too, and these days all they seem to do is repeat what's on Ticketmaster's mailings.

    Not only should they block the merger, but really should also be looking into the current ties between venues and Ticketmaster!

  4. Anonymous Coward


    amanfromMars 1 wrote: "I wonder what Mr Pratchett would say?"

    I don't know but I'm guessing it would be a joke - almost entirely derivative of his earlier works, it would contain many of the same gags and as a result would please his fans endlessly.

    There would undoubtedly be some speech by Death in gothic script and block capitals. There would probably be some witches and a few confused wizards.

    It wouldn't feature a walking suitcase though. That's long gone (along with any originality and humour that once existed in his writings)

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Not just fans

    This merger is helping Live Nation and Ticketmaster continue to stamp on the smaller, independent theatres. They are struggling enough with the recent reduction in Arts Council funding (partly due to public and lottery money being diverted to the 2012 Olympics).

    Large conglomerates (sp?) are reaping all the benefits of the resurgence in interest in live theatre by locking in to exclusive tours of high profile shows. The public think they are being all arty and cultured by going to see Connie Fisher etc but in reality they are being drawn into a funding feedback-loop with the cash cow without helping out the actual cause of British art and theatre in the slightest.

    Anonymous due to field of work and employer... which you can probably guess. Disappointed by the lack of 'luvvie' icon so Badgers will have to do.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Touts by any other name

    Ticketmaster are licenced ticket touts. They have block booked thousands of tickets for the Ashes tests (so no-one can get the things direct at face price) and then flogged them up at massive markups.

    In my world that's ticket touting. The Government should really ban these second level agencies who charge more than the original ticket value for tickets which they themselves help create scarcity for.

  7. blackworx

    Ticketmaster are a bunch of Thieves

    Booking fee on every ticket plus card surcharge - there is only one word for it: robbery. They want investigating now, never mind if they <strike>merge with</strike> swallow up Live Nation.

    They make me so f*cking angry AAAAAAAAAAAARGHGSD;KUJGDGSK;UJSDFGGUO/

  8. kain preacher Silver badge

    Ticketmaster USA

    Well you think thats bad. Here in the USA , if buy a ticket on line they charge you a $5 ticket printing fee. WTF thats out and out fraud. I'm paying $5 to print my own ticket

  9. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Still Crazy after all these years...:-)

    "That's long gone (along with any originality and humour that once existed in his writings)" .... By Anonymous Coward Posted Tuesday 14th July 2009 13:23 GMT

    The fear of a lonely madness rather than enjoyment in the realisation of deeper perceptions for an alternate reality state, would prey on one's mind to extinguish live sparks. Others though would realise the Virtual Opportunities in ITs Novel Fields.

  10. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    WE are Ticketmaster

    All your ticket fees belong to us.

  11. Aortic Aneurysm

    Live Theatre...

    seetickets are the main supplier for tickets to live shows in London are they not?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Ticketmaster IT note

    Back in the day TM ran some crazy stuff. Their core stuff was licensed from the US. It ran on DEC hardware with VMS totally stripped off. Custom OS + bespoke DB package. They claimed HW which ran c 4-1 users on VMS ran about 400 (mostly remote via serial lines through modems). It ran live, backup copy with live update and a 3rd cold system on seperate site with 2 seperate comms system. The most serious DR/backup system I have ever seen in a for-profit company.

    Their back office processing was run thorugh custom apps in FoxPro (Will MS still sell you a copy ?) using IIRC their program generator and Automator MI to stich multiple disperate apps together and give them a sort of unified command language (still a neat idea BTW) by reading each apps screen messages and recognising them (easier in DOS but should have been possible in Windows).

    TM certainly shafted customers big time back them. Looks like they still do. letting them merge and get any bigger is unlikely to make their prices any more reasonable but will make their profits bigger. Nice enough to work for though and they kept a lot of resting actors, actresses and dancers employed. They also had some spectacular own goals as well.

    AC because I don't want my past retching up with me.


    Transferring the Better Quantum State of Wealth Closer To Bodies And Minds?

    Bigger game means mainstreaming and owning a media source. Appearance of its semantic flow is often be not approved as correct (I can imagine a disclosure of the source of some concepts (-: ), because of sometimes delicate matter of a delicate nature of the live air.

    Though, it maybe only seems so because of somehow an old-fashioned way of thinking. And, of course, union is a move which is really appreciated for non-gov and probably state actors. If both [both stressed] parties were good in IT... Transferring the Better Quantum State of Wealth Closer To Bodies And Minds?


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