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Competition Bureau says Ticketmaster scalper bots do not contravene federal law

OTTAWA — The Competition Bureau says Ticketmaster has not contravened federal competition legislation by facilitating the mass scalping of tickets through the use of its TradeDesk software.

Following public complaints, the agency conducted an investigation by reviewing videos, the company’s behaviour, marketing practices and interactions with other players before concluding the scalper bot allegations did not contravene the Competition Act.

Scalper or ticket bots are software designed to purchase a large number of tickets for events when they become available.

Ticketmaster’s TradeDesk software allegedly allows users to synchronize their Ticketmaster accounts to buy tickets with their online resale operations, allowing them to list tickets on the secondary market.

Meanwhile, the Bureau says it is still pursuing ongoing litigation against Ticketmaster, Live Nation and affiliated companies to stop the company from allegedly using a deceptive practice known as “drip pricing” that sees customers pay sometimes more than 65 per cent above advertised costs.

Its investigation found that advertised prices are deceptive because consumers must pay additional fees that are added later in the purchasing process. Public hearings are scheduled to begin in the fall.

The Canadian Press

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