Duluth concert tickets — Buy Local?

I propose that the city of Duluth only issue event licenses under the condition that tickets must be purchasable locally. For example, do I really have to pay Ticketmaster $11.37 in handling fees for a $35 concert ticket at Bayfront Festival Park this summer? A 32 percent markup paid to a California company? I would much rather pay any ticket markup to a local record store or nonprofit. Or, directly to the city for that matter. Anything to keep the money in our community, not exporting it to a corporation in California. Maybe I am missing something?

27 Comments

Danny G

about 11 years ago

This would lead to even fewer shows in Duluth.  Sad, but true.

Vicarious

about 11 years ago

Danny, please elaborate.

in.dog.neato

about 11 years ago

The terrorists would win.

Need

about 11 years ago

Sounds like you're missing the show.

Paul Lundgren

about 11 years ago

Vicarious asked Danny G to elaborate. That's got to be unprecedented.

I think we're not far from seeing either serious changes in Ticketmaster's tactics or other online ticket outlets taking over. Give it a year and watch what happens.

Vicarious

about 11 years ago

I'm on the cutting edge.

in.dog.neato

about 11 years ago

Cutting edge of pants!

Danny G

about 11 years ago

This is not coming from any expertise or anything on my end, but here's what I was sort of going for.  Let's say you're a promoter for an Elton John or a Willie Nelson (or Korn, Alice Cooper,etc.).  Now let's say you're putting a tour together.  Part of that process would involve securing ticket distribution.  Ticketmaster is going to be given the list of the cities on the tour.  Now let's say at one small, northern MN hamlet on that tour the promoter says "by the way, TM...you guys don't get to do our tickets there...just everywhere else".  I doubt that's going to fly with them.

Craig S.

about 11 years ago

I'm no fan of TM, but the ticketing industry AND the live entertainment industry are far more complicated than simply requiring tickets to be sold "locally."

Without getting into lots of detail, bear in mind these acts are national acts that like consistency in distribution. Every artist contract I have read requires a bonded ticketing agency.

You could probably devote an entire website to ticketing "101." 

Is it a racket? Sure. And yes, Paul is probably right, things will change in the next year. Will convenience charges and facility fees ever go away? Doubtful. They may come down, but someone will pay for the convenience of sitting at home in their pj's, coffee and buying tickets online. 

Again, I do not defend Ticketmaster. They make a lot if money on someone else's back.

peaceNic

about 11 years ago

Local acts are cheaper, more intimate, and the money stays here.

mrashley

about 11 years ago

Pearl Jam and others tried to take this on in the 1990s and failed.  But it does work when I can buy tickets safely and with confidence for shows across the country and in Europe when I go on holiday.  I think I would be happy if they just started calling the extra charges our profit.

Jesus

about 11 years ago

Ticketmaster is run by the devil ... bastard.

patty

about 11 years ago

While we're on the subject of concert tickets, we should all be writting our St. Paul reps. and the Governor asking them to repeal the law that was passed just a few years ago and made scalping legal in MN.  What's the point of that?  Where is the benefit in allowing people to make thousands of dollars off the work and talent of others?  In the end, the consumer loses as well as anyone else legitimately involved in these concerts.

Rougement

about 11 years ago

Two of my biggest pet hates are monopolies and being ripped off, so I don't so business with Ticketmaster. It means I miss out on shows but I can live with that. 

It's easy to blame TM but they're a huge corporation doing what huge corporations do. If the punters and the artists got organized against TM it would be to everyone's benefit but I don't see it happening anytime soon. That would be terribly inconvenient when you can just pay the convenience charge and grumble about it.

Claire

about 11 years ago

Agree with Patty. That law makes no sense.

Craig R

about 11 years ago

Then somebody please explain why the local roller derby uses Ticketmaster.

MJ

about 11 years ago

First Avenue managed to dump Ticketmaster.  Thanks to the Internet, it's certainly possible these days, and I hope and expect that more venues will soon follow suit.

Shane Bauer

about 11 years ago

This looks like a sweet spot to let everyone know that we were able to do our own ticketing through our own, local business for Michael Franti & Spearhead on July 9 (Twin Ports Bridge Festival), despite a contract that requested a bonded ticketing agency.

There's no way we could have comfortably promoted a positive, community event through TicketMaster. So there's a $4 "everything" charge for shipping, handling, convenience, facility, processing, whatever-they-try-to-call-it charges.

That says a lot of good things about the band, the agency representing them, and the future of event ticketing. I think.

@ndy

about 11 years ago

I second MJ's sentiments. If First Ave can drop ticketmaster, there's no reason local venues and Secret Service can't drop them as well.

Mr. Digits

about 11 years ago

Incidentally, Patty, the question "where is the benefit in allowing people to make thousands of dollars off the work and talent of others?" is pretty much the basis of communism.

I'm not saying it isn't a great question, though, so if anybody knows...

patty

about 11 years ago

Mr. Digits, sir...  I don't really think Communism is based on stealing the talents of others and making a profit.  In fact, although I'm not an expert, it would seem that an individual making a profit runs counter to basic Communist principles. Sharing the wealth economic models are not the same thing as scapling concert tickets. Just the opposite, in fact.  Capitalism loves a profit, and doesn't always require an ethical route to making one...  Just sayin'!

girlfromnorthcountry

about 11 years ago

@Craig R, the DECC will only allow ticket sales through Ticketmaster, otherwise it would be Brown Paper Tickets all the way.  Which we've used at the Wessman and World of Wheels.

woodtick

about 11 years ago

And the Devil wears a flag pin.

john

about 11 years ago

The folks putting on the Michael Franti gig successfully circumvented Ticketbastard - fwiw.

Mr. Digits

about 11 years ago

Patty, what I was basically saying is that capitalism is based on stealing the profit's (or excess capital, as it were) from those who create it, and that Ticketmaster pretty much exemplifies it. 

Perhaps you assumed that I was accusing you of something?  False.  I know that people use "socialist/communist" as a bad word or name, and generally incorrectly at that, but I wasn't using it there.  Nor am I at all "conservative" myself.  

In other words, mellow out.

ruby2sd4y

about 11 years ago

This (ticketing rape via ticketmasturbators - strokin it all for their own glory) hasn't changed in the last year or several - what makes you think it would all change within the next one?

Paul Lundgren

about 11 years ago

It won't all change; it will start to change. See Shane Bauer's comment.

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