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Bill Could Make Buying Concert Tickets More Transparent

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Getting your hands on a hot concert ticket can be frustrating and some Minnesota lawmakers want to change that.

Concert promoters say scalpers use special software to log into websites to buy up thousands of tickets, while credit card companies and fan clubs also buy seats in advance.

That leaves a much smaller number for the consumer.

“We know that there are tickets that are done through pre-sale and special offers and we just think the public should be able to know how many tickets are available to the public,” said Rep. Debra Hilstrom DFL-Brooklyn Center.

Hilstrom said the number of tickets available to real people is likely a fraction of total seating for concert venues. And fans should know how many there are, she said.

Concert promoter Randy Levy with the Fans First Coalition also wants fans to be able to get tickets at face value, but he calls this bill a joke.

Levy doesn’t think it will change the real problem — online scalpers and bots that can buy thousands of tickets in minutes. He also argues pre-sale tickets for clubs and sponsor packages are fair, because they give the best fans the first shot at tickets.

Supporters of the bill, say they just want transparency.

“If they release that information we can get to the bottom of what are the issues,” Hilstrom said.

Target Center Management said if this bill were to pass, some artists would not even come to Minnesota.

On Thursday, the House jobs committee heard the bill and amended it to be studied. It would have to pass in the House, and then get a hearing in the Senate before becoming law.

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