Michigan House Looking At Ticket Scalping Bill - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Michigan House Looking At Ticket Scalping Bill

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LANSING, MI (WLNS) - No matter where you buy your sports and performing arts tickets, you may have dealt with a ticket scalping company.

Ticket scalpers purchase tickets from original dealers and sell them for a higher fee and a house bill may tolerate these ticket scalpers.

6 News Sharon Yoo has more. Whether it's a sporting event or for the performing arts, ticket scalping happens without discrimination.

And a house bill introduced by Representative Tim Kelly of the 94th district will strike the law that bans ticket scalping.

“It's a free market measure to eliminate the government between a lawful transaction of a willing buyer and a willing seller,” said State Representative Tim Kelly (r), District 94.

Currently ticket scalping is considered a misdemeanor. However if this bill makes it all the way through, then ticket scalping will be legal in the state of Michigan.

“When Uncle Joe wants to sell a couple tickets outside of U of M stadium, he gets collared as a criminal. I say they either prosecute everybody or prosecute none.”

But those on the other side of the bill say the issue extends beyond Uncle Joe selling a couple tickets outside a stadium. For example in the case of the Wharton Center at MSU, they say the core of the problem lies with mass scalping that happens online by unaffiliated businesses looking to make extra dollars.

“They will put our tickets up for sale at inflated prices before they've purchased the tickets themselves,” said Diane Willcox, Marketing Communications, Wharton Center.

This not only creates the issue of consumers not getting the seats they paid for, but also makes it difficult for the original vendors to communicate with consumers.

“If there's a date change or a cancellation, etc. We can't help you if you have purchased your ticket through a scalper. Our point of record is the broker themselves and the broker doesn't pass on that information,” said Willcox.

That makes the consumer vulnerable to frequent scams. Willcox says the solution is to review and strengthen the law, not repeal it.
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