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Monday, June 24, 2024

Ticketmaster offering credit

After 12 years of charging fees of up to half the price of a ticket, Ticketmaster will soon be repaying customers to the tune of $45 million over four years.

In 2003, two Ticketmaster users filed a class-action suit against the company, claiming the processing and UPS delivery fees were excessive and deceptive, according to ticketfeelitigation.com.

"In essence, what they're getting them for is charging for services that really weren't rendered - giving fees for costs that really weren't incurred," said UF business law professor Robert Emerson.

Although Ticketmaster disputes the claims, the company agreed in November to settle by offering purchase credits to customers who bought tickets through Ticketmaster's website between Oct. 21, 1999 and Oct. 19, 2011.

Ticketmaster will offer a $1.50 credit on future transactions for class members.

Customers who paid for rushed delivery through UPS will receive a $5 credit per order shipped by UPS.

Customers can receive credits for up to 17 transactions for each type of credit.

Ticketmaster users involved in the suit will be emailed a coupon code to redeem the credit, which will go toward future Ticketmaster purchases.

Political science and sustainability sophomore Sydney O'Haire, 20, said she bought about 30 tickets from Ticketmaster during the period in question.

She said she's glad the lawsuit was brought against the company but doesn't think it's a sufficient punishment.

"It seems like an easy way to get out of a really big deal because Ticketmaster has monopolized ticket purchases for every genre of music," she said.

According to court documents, Ticketmaster must pay a minimum of $11.25 million per year for the next four years.

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If that amount isn't met through credits to Ticketmaster customers, the company will pay the balance to a charitable organization.

The final approval hearing for the settlement will take place in May. Emerson said Ticketmaster probably won't be hurt financially by the lawsuit.

"Given how big Ticketmaster is and how many venues they control and the share of the market they have, $50 million may not really be that much," he said.

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