Attorney General Tong Praises Committee Vote to Reform Unfair, Anti-Consumer Ticketing Practices

Attorney General William Tong praised a unanimous vote in the General Law Committee to advance reforms proposed by his office to address unfair, anti-consumer ticketing practices in the live event industry.

“Disclosure of fees from the start of the ticket purchase process will save consumers valuable time selecting the perfect seat for a reasonable price only to discover a huge mark-up in fees and surcharges when they are about to click ‘purchase,'” Attorney General Tong stated in his testimony supporting the bill.

“Also, following New York’s lead, this provision requires resellers to disclose how much they originally paid for the tickets they’re selling. More can certainly be done to address the types of anti-consumer, anti-competitive, market manipulation that we have seen around high demand shows and events. Our office is closely following the discussion of this topic nationally.”

Connecticut has an active investigation into the live event ticketing industry following widespread concern regarding the recent handling of Taylor Swift concert ticket sales.

The Connecticut Office of the Attorney General is unable to comment on that investigation.

“We are taking a hard look at anti-competitive conduct in this industry, and how sale and resale practices have harmed fans and consumers. The Taylor Swift concert ticket fiasco was a particularly disastrous example, but these anti-consumer practices have been a longtime problem and need reform—either through legislatures or the courts,” said Attorney General Tong in a release.

“When your favorite band, singer, or artist comes to town it is exciting that you will get the chance to listen to them live in concert, but it can become stressful when it’s time to purchase your tickets. That’s why with this legislation we are working to improve the process,” Sen. James Maroney, co-chair of the General Law Committee. “Ticket sites need to be transparent from the start and show hidden fees right at the beginning of the purchasing process. Along with Attorney General Tong, as Senate Chair of the General Law Committee, I am honored to lead the unanimous vote that will advance reforms that will address the unfair ticketing practices Connecticut consumers are faced with.”

“When you click ‘buy’ on a ticket to see your favorite singer, band, or even comedian, the ticket price shouldn’t skyrocket when it gets to your cart because of undisclosed fees,” said Rep. Mike D’Agostino, co-chair of the General Law Committee. “The General Law Committee made it a priority to address this concerning ‘industry standard’ and our collaboration with Attorney General Tong ensures that this will be the first step in protecting fans.”

Click here for bill text, and here for Attorney General Tong’s full testimony.