They’re alleging fraud and misrepresentation.
Some Swifties are taking their frustration with Ticketmaster to court. A group of Taylor Swift fans are suing Ticketmaster and its Los Angeles-based parent company, Live Nation Entertainment, following the ticketing fiasco for Swift’s The Eras Tour. The debacle left some potential ticket-buyers waiting in long virtual lines and many without tickets.
In a complaint filed on Dec. 2 to the Los Angeles County District Court, 26 fans across 13 states claimed Ticketmaster violated California’s Cartwright Act and Unfair Competition Law during their Verified Fan Program on Nov. 15. Last month, the ticket vendor site canceled the general tickets sale for Swift’s tour “due to insufficient remaining tickets.”
“Based on information and belief, Ticketmaster has effectuated this anticompetitive scheme by forcing fans of musicians to exclusively use Ticketmaster for presale and sales prices, which are above what a competitive market price would be,” the complaint reads, further noting Ticketmaster’s “anticompetitive behavior” has and will continue to “harm Taylor Swift fans.”
In the documents, the group has accused Ticketmaster of “fraud, misrepresentation, and fraudulent inducement.” Specifically, the plaintiffs allege the ticket vendor site “intentionally and purposefully mislead ticket purchasers” by allowing “scalpers and bots” to access the code-based presale.
Before the public ticket sale cancellation, LiveNation’s chairman Greg Maffei told CNBC that 14 million people tried to score presale tickets on Nov. 15. However, only 1.5 million spots were open for presale. The lawsuit asks for the court to hit the ticket vendor site with a fine of $2,500 for each violation.
Following the general sale cancellation, Ticketmaster apologized to Swift and her fans in a statement on Nov. 17. The vendor claimed an overwhelming surge of bot attacks created a massive demand, something that their Verified Fan Program was structured to go against.
On Nov. 18, the Midnights singer addressed the incident in an Instagram Story. In her note, she didn’t publicly name Ticketmaster, but claimed her team had asked the party in question “multiple times if they could handle this kind of demand.” The ticket site assured her they could.
“It’s really difficult for me to trust an outside entity with these relationships and loyalties, and excruciating for me to just watch mistakes happen with no recourse,” she wrote.
As of Dec. 7, neither Ticketmaster nor Taylor Swift has publicly addressed the Swifties’ lawsuit.
The Swifties’ lawsuit is not Ticketmaster’s only legal concern regarding the concert ticket fiasco. According to The New York Times, the Justice Department has also opened an investigation into Live Nation Entertainment over a potential abuse of power.