Friday, February 24, 2012
Read all a-tout it...
Despite attempts by Viagogo to get an injunction Channel 4 showed its The Great Ticket Scandal last night and, whilst most of us knew that these sites were dodgy, for genuine, ordinary music fans the scale is truly sickening. Folders full of credit cards for staff to use to buy up tickets, deals with venues and promoters to secure all the best seats (for which the venues/promoters then get a kick back), 'brokers' who have inside teams working at major venues to scoop up as many tickets as possible...it's a wonder any 'normal' people get in to anything these days. This whole thing is really easily stamped out but there seems to be very little political will to do so. I've written about this before and in the intervening years the whole thing has got so much worse. Two tickets to go and see Madonna at Murrayfield for £800 anyone? Bargain. I'd expect several nights in bed with Madonna for that. She'd have to decorate the kitchen too and change the busted lightbulbs in the living room...and even then I'd want change. I'm not sure what sickens me most about the whole thing really. Take your pick. There's the fact that music's being treated like an extension of the stock market, the blocking out of younger/poorer fans, the sad rows of workers in these touting sweat shop earning minimum wage whilst their morally corrupt bosses rake in the millions...or the poor (okay...rich) deluded fools who stump up 20 times the face value of a ticket to go and watch...Coldplay. Sigh.
Often the best and most exciting music's being made by brand new up and coming bands playing in pubs or smaller venues up and down the country for the price of a pint. These are generally tout free zones. For now. If Viagogo, Seatwave and the other pop pimps aren't wiped off the face of the earth will this always be the case though?