President Biden Announces Pledge to Do Away With Hidden Concert Ticket Fees
President Joe Biden will make remarks from the White House on Thursday (June 15) announcing a new pledge from the concert giants Live Nation and Ticketmaster, as well as secondary ticket markets such as SeatGeek, to eliminate hidden fees on concert tickets and instead show one "clear, total price" for each ticket, as USA Today reported.
The announcement arrives as the Biden administration works to eliminate the many other "junk fees" tacked onto costs for consumers, from bank statements to cable bills. The president touched on the topic in his State of the Union address in February. Now, he is forcing the concert ticket retailers to instigate all-in pricing without the hidden fees.
"President Biden has been working to lower costs for hardworking families by bringing down inflation, capping insulin prices for seniors, and eliminating hidden junk fees," Lael Brainard, the director of the National Economic Council, said in a statement, according to NBC News.
"More companies are heeding the president's call so that Americans know what they're paying for up front and can save money as a result," the director added.
Last year, public frustration with the rising cost of hidden concert ticket fees gained new traction when fans of the pop star Taylor Swift reported exorbitant extra prices on their tickets, not to mention the difficulty they faced obtaining the tickets overall.
The Track Record of Ticketmaster
Ticketmaster has long maintained a stronghold on concert ticket sales in the United States. In 2010, the retailer merged with Live Nation, the promoter, to become a singular company.
Last year, a group of U.S. concertgoers sued Live Nation Entertainment — the corporation enveloping both companies — for allegedly violating antitrust laws and using what they called "predatory" selling.
But the concert giant emerged victorious when a court ruled buyers had waived their rights to sue in favor of arbitration per the company's terms and conditions.
Live Nation's Record 2022 Revenue
In Live Nation's 2022 SEC filing, the corporation broke down its yearly numbers, explaining, "Our concerts business generated $13.5 billion, or 80.9 percent, of our total revenue during 2022. We promoted more than 43,600 live music and other events in 2022."
In a revealing passage, it added that "approximately 270 million tickets were sold using our Ticketmaster systems. … As ticket sales increase, related ticketing operating income generally increases as well."