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Ticketmaster scalps Radiohead tickets

For one of the first times since completing its acquisition of TicketsNow, Ticketmaster has begun scalping tickets by directing fans of a sold out show to its TicketsNow auctions. reports that people who were looking for tickets on Ticketmaster, are now being directed to TicketsNow, a move that some ticket brokers feared when the acquisition was approved by the federal government in February.

Radiohead purchased ads in print and on radio to promote the sales of their concert tickets on Ticketmaster, but after those tickets are sold out on Ticketmaster, customers using the Ticketmaster website see a page with options (screenshot at, with the “Find Tickets” link directing customers to TicketsNow, which is listed as Ticketmaster’s “partner site.” However, TicketsNow is a secondary ticket seller owned by Ticketmaster. reveals that a source close to the situation, who requested anonymity, a TicketsNow executive helped assist with the sale of more than $1 million worth of Radiohead tickets on the TicketsNow website, which at a margin of 25 percent allowed TicketsNow to generate a gross of more than $250,000 from the deal.

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  • Disgusting.

  • this is beyond disgusting. is this not somehow illegal? it is sickening when fans are online waiting at 10:00 sharp and can’t get ANYTHING and the tix are up on ticketsnow at the same time tauntingly and proudly asking for 2 or 3 times the price?

  • Well done, Adriaan. Thanks for writing about this! This needs to be exposed. With your help, due to this site’s popularity, maybe we’ll generate a chorus loud enough to take down ticketmaster and such egregious scalping!

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  • Unreal. They should be taken to court for pulling stunts like this.

  • Thankfully, I was lucky enough to see Radiohead in Boston back in ’95 for $10. This next visit to Boston(Mansfield) will be my last, ticket prices are outrageous with all the fees, and times of day you have to be waiting by your computer to get tickets. It has just become such a headache, which means at least one more ticket for you…..

  • corporate scalping

    what the hell

    i wonder what percent of the cut ticketmaster gets from ticketsnow.

  • Not only does this sound illegal, it is also asinine in that it discourages those like myself, who were online at 9:59am and still got clowned, from buying tickets at all.

  • I’m glad someone wrote about this because it’s just ridiculous. I waited like everyone to get tickets at 10 in the morning and I was redirected to after my very first ticket request was denied. I was able to get two tickets, but just barely. I was appalled at the whole situation and it almost makes me want to just not go to shows anymore. The scalpers get all the tickets and expect you to pay two to three times face value at minimum and it’s just crazy. Needless to say, if I decide to get secondhand tickets for the other show they are playing – I will not be going through ticketsnow. Ticketmaster already got my eleven dollar fee on top of the ticket price and I don’t think they really need any more of my money.

  • Not to deviate from the important subject at hand, but…did Radiohead seriously purchase print and radio advertising to promote the tickets? Is that necessary at all? When’s the last time they didn’t sell out a U.S. show?

  • My friend and I were on at 10:00am for the presale and the next day as well for the general sale hoping to see Radiohead August 15 in Toronto. Of course we were unable to secure any tickets after trying repeatedly for hours. I’ve been looking forward to this show for some time now and it appears I’m going to miss it as I refuse to pay $400+ for a $70 ticket.

  • Although I agree it’s disgusting and shouldn’t be done, I’m not sure that there is anything illegal about it. Suppose I am the main place at which to buy lemonade. Suppose further that I buy another lemonade stand, name it something different, and sell lemonade at much higher price there. Let’s say I sell out of lemonade and direct the rest of my would-be costumers to my other lemonade stand. Now, I don’t have any sort of monopoly on lemonade–people could simply buy the lemonade that they purchased from me from other people. Furthermore, I’m not obliged to make sure that everyone gets lemonade from either of my stands. Unbeknownst to the buyers I arranged things in such a way that I would run out of the product at the lowwer cost. But am I obligated to inform my costumers or potential customers of my business strategy? Certainly not. It seems that if anything is illegal it is from the standpoint that Ticketmaster should have to inform the persons who are using them as an outlet for saling tickets. Still, the law might actually work the other way. It may hold that those seeking an outlet through which to sell tickets must really question that outlet and press them on signing contracts against such marketing/sales strategies. Of course, one might then point out that hands are tied here due to Ticketmaster’s overwhelming hold on the market. I don’t know, the situation is definitey interesting. I think there’s a better case to be made against them from a general ethics standpoint. But, I can’t go into that here. Fuck Ticketmaster, and if there is a law against it, I hope they are prosecuted.

  • I was on Ticketmaster the MINUTE the tickets went on sale. They were “sold out” but I could buy some from TicketsNow for three times the price…what a scam. Thom, sell tickets yourself much like “In Rainbows” and help us real fans.

  • There was a follow-up article from TicketNews too. Apparently, the inventory was from brokers and not Ticketmaster.

  • Yeahh.. I got screwed on tickets for Chula Vista. I barely got seats… was supposed to get 202 row, but for some reason, they wouldnt go through, and disappeared. Now I’m near the lawn with the 300 tickets… Whoopee.

  • OHHHH Brokers is the new term? Professional resellers? What do we call those? Scalpers! Ya.

  • ticketmaster has always done this. they only make available to the general public the last few rows at a sought after event. the rest go to scalpers. hmm… why would they do that? if they aren’t taking money from the scalpers, they would have no incentive to operate this way. radiohead has the clout to release their own album, i cannot figure out why they can’t also find a way to ensure their fans get a fair deal. i have no problem paying a reasonable price to go to a concert, and i understand fully how expensive it is to put on a show of this size, between paying security and insurance and renting a venue and trasportation… touring is expensive and i have gladly supported radiohead over the years, but this ongoing scam with the resale of tickets is criminal.

  • yep. i tried the waste presale, the presale on the edge radiostation, and ticketmaster, all right from the start, and got nothing. very disheartenning for fans that have waited and waited for the tour, and i’m now looking to ebay for my toronto tickets. sucks.

  • There is solution provided by the website. Go to where fans get to pick their seats and set their price. Remarkale!!!!

  • Brokers gather in Las Vegas to discuss the Ticketmaster/TicketsNow merge. They should leave TicketsNow. Ticketmaster is going to use these brokers to learn the tricks of the trade. Then, they will drop them. I hate Ticketmaster!

    Read the article here.

  • Glad someone wrote about this. I tried getting tickets for the Toronto show and within an hour
    they were all sold out. Now all I can find is tons of scalping websites and Ebay stores selling tickets for outrageous prices. I love Radiohead and really wanted to go the show, but I cant afford to drop $150 for one lawn ticket when they originally were on sale for $35.50. I really dont understand why Ticketbastard would think this would be a good idea. But all they care about is money.

    The only thing thats gonna happen is that there are going to be tons of empty seats where people could’ve sat, if they only could’ve afforded to buy a ticket. Such bull.

  • Phish tickets were recently sold by TM. They were sold out in minutes and of course for sale at the same time from “Tickets Now” a company of ticketmaster. The prices range from $250 – $1600 PER TICKET!!!!!!

    Ticket Master is against scalping? Hogwash. They are the worst scalpers they’re are. “TIcket Brokers” = Scalper.

    We need to lobby against this, someone with the no how needs to start a website and get some laws changed!

  • Exactly what I was looking for, thanks for posting.

  • […] They have been accused of systematically scalping tickets to shows by everyone from Springsteen to Radiohead. Some users even decided to take action against Ticketmaster/Live Nation in a class-action lawsuit […]

  • […] As their website says ” We are the leading open marketplace dedicated to tickets for live events, where people can buy tickets at market prices, even when the event is sold out.” They’ve also been accused of using another reselling site they own,, to flog tickets at hugely inflated prices – … d-tickets/. […]

  • […] to keep bots off their site — especially as Ticketmaster themselves have a sideline in scalping reselling tickets via their StubHub equivalent TicketsNow. But, in fact, it appears they couldn’t really care […]

  • […] to keep bots off their site — especially as Ticketmaster themselves have a sideline in scalping reselling tickets via their StubHub equivalent TicketsNow. But, in fact, it appears they couldn’t really care less […]

  • How is this news? I mean WAS… It’s too old to be news NOW…
    But, even at the time, it wasn’t news. Ticketmaster scalps every ticket it sells. Scalping is their entire business model.

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