Reporting Liz Collin
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – When the biggest names in music come to town it can often cause a big headache for anyone who wants to see the show.
But one group is fighting back.
Fan Freedom Project is asking Target Center and the Xcel Energy Center to be up front about how many seats are really for sale when tickets are offered up to the public.
Ticket insiders expect another mad scramble for seats at the Xcel when Lady Gaga tickets go on sale this Friday. Fan Freedom says there has to be a better way to get tickets to fans.
There are still plenty of tickets to see Justin Bieber in concert in a couple of weeks on the secondary market, but if you tried to pay $40-$90 months ago when they officially went on sale, Target Center seats were gone in 30 minutes.
Jon Potter is the president of Fan Freedom Project in Washington D.C. The advocacy group is making a push in Minnesota and several states to get venues to be more up front about how many tickets are really there to fight over.
“Everybody’s frustrated,” Potter said. “Everybody’s unhappy with the ticketing business.”
One investigation in Nashville found when Bieber seats went on sale of the 14,000 total tickets just 1,000 were available for the public the rest went to sponsors, fan clubs, and promotional pre-sales and will end up on the secondary market.
“Were Minnesota consumers treated as poorly as Tennessee consumers?”
That’s the answer Fan Freedom has been trying to find. It filed a formal request to Minneapolis and St. Paul to see the total number of tickets available for a few big shows at Target Center and the Xcel, since both venues receive public money.
Minneapolis said it’s a non-public trade secret information. The Fan Freedom Project told us St. Paul hasn’t responded.
When WCCO-TV contacted the Xcel Energy Center and Target Center, they both shared similar information. A spokesperson for Target Center said Fan Freedom is backed by StubHub, and the organization only wants the information to make things easier for the secondary ticket market. A spokesperson for the Xcel Energy Center said it’s not up to the venue to release the information it has to come from the promoters of the shows.
Fans said it is information they want to know and that it should only be fair.