Concert ticket resale sites are the latest facet of the music industry to feel the wrath of Prince after the artist decided on Friday morning to postpone sales for his upcoming U.K. tour. Following Ticketmaster’s announcement that sales would not be going ahead as planned, Prince took to Twitter to ID the culprit in the form of a multiple choice question.
MULTIPLE CHOICE: A. SCAVENGER B. VULTURE C. TOUT D. ALL OF THE ABOVE pic.twitter.com/IL4J5mZRhM
— Prince3EG (@Prince3EG) November 13, 2015
The answer would be D, with Prince comparing secondary sellers (or "touts") — who scoop up tickets and then resell them at higher prices on sites like StubHub and Get Me In! — to scavengers and vultures who "rip off genuine fans."
Prince announced his "Piano and a Microphone" solo tour this week. It kicks off in Vienna on Nov. 24. He is scheduled to play two shows each in Glasgow (Nov. 27), London (Nov. 29) and Birmingham (Dec. 1).
Prince later tweeted out a link to a new study on the secondary market conducted by Which?. "The secondary market was originally labelled as a fan-to-fan exchange where anyone can resell tickets, but these sites have attracted touts operating on an industrial scale," the study concludes. Which? monitored Seatwave, Viagogo StubHub! and Get Me In! and found that tickets routinely begin appearing on the sites before seats are even released.
Many fans began tweeting at Prince following the decision and he shared several of the supportive messages. "Blame the touts. Or rather resale sites. Esp those that somehow had tix on sale YESTERDAY," said one. Another fan claimed prices were already out of control even before official tickets went on sale. "Hitting £5,000 pounds for 2 tickets clearly means there is a significant issue that needs to be dealt with."
Prince said it would be cheaper for U.K. fans to just fly to Minneapolis, get a hotel and attend a Paisley Park show. "Better overall experience too!" he said.