"People know that Ticketmaster has a resale platform," one reseller tells Billboard. "How do people think the tickets got there?"
The images from the news video shot by an undercover team of reporters was jarring. Dispatched to the annual Ticket Summit conference for brokers and scalpers in Las Vegas, Toronto Star reporters captured a representative from Ticketmaster on film admitting that the company offers software that allows resellers to quickly upload and download tickets to Ticketmaster's resale marketplace with little oversight from Ticketmaster.
The software, TradeDesk, is a ticket management system that automates many of the time-consuming tasks of reselling multiple tickets — competing secondary sites like StubHub, Vivid Seats and TicketNetwork offer a similar product. When asked if Ticketmaster polices its rules against having multiple TM accounts, the unidentified employee in the video tells the reporter “Uh, no. I have a gentleman who has over 200 Ticketmaster.com accounts right in the point of sale and syncs his tickets in every day." When asked how many brokers are using multiple accounts, which would be a violation of the company's terms and conditions, the rep says “pretty damn near every one of them,” adding, “I can’t think of any of my clients that aren’t using multiples. I mean (you) have to if you want to get a good show and the ticket limit is six or eight — you’re not gonna make a living on eight tickets.”
A high level official at Live Nation, which owns Ticketmaster, acknowledged to Billboard that the company does not regularly police TradeDesk or its secondary sites for scalpers who use multiple accounts to buy up tickets. Billboard has also learned that TradeDesk allows ticket resellers to seamlessly link their primary account with the resale account, so that tickets purchased on the primary are synched with the press of a button and listed for resale on TM+. The software does allow for brokers to manage tickets from multiple primary accounts, which isn’t necessarily a violation of Ticketmaster’s terms and services. An independent ticket broker might have 30 employees, each equipped with their own TM account and credit card, allowing the company to buy 200 to 300 tickets per show without breaking any rules. TradeDesk then takes all of those separate accounts and syncs them with a single resale account.