The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has opened a compliance review into the four largest secondary ticketing websites.
The CMA is carrying out a review to assess whether the four sites – Viagogo, Ticketmaster-operated Seatwave and Get Me In! and eBay-owned StubHub are providing adequate information to consumers. It is asking anyone with relevant information about the platforms and their practices to get in touch by the July 12 deadline.
Last year the House of Commons backed an amendment to the Consumer Rights Act (CRA) to regulate re-sellers more closely. However, consumer group Which? recently monitored the four sites and concluded the rules outlined in the amendment were not being followed.
“In March 2015, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that four of the largest UK secondary ticket platforms – Get Me In!, Seatwave, StubHub and Viagogo – provided undertakings in which they agreed to build upon their existing practices and give improved information to buyers about the tickets listed on their sites,” states the CMA. “During the course of the CMA’s investigation and since the CMA concluded its work, additional legal requirements have also been introduced, some of which relate specifically to the sale of secondary tickets.
“The CMA is committed to monitoring the outcomes of its work, and has launched this review to assess whether the four secondary ticket platforms are complying with the undertakings they provided as part of the CMA’s investigation and their legal obligations. The CMA has not taken any decisions about whether there have been any breaches of consumer protection legislation or what it might do once this review is completed.
“The information gathered during this review will help the CMA to determine whether further action is warranted.”
The move follows Professor Michael Waterson’s report into the resale sector, which was published on May 26 after receiving more than 1,000 submissions from promoters, managers, agents, artists and secondary ticketing platforms.
University of Warwick-based economist Waterson called for greater enforcement action of existing legislation outlined in the CRA, including the publication of details such as the face value of the ticket, the seat number and any applicable restrictions.
The CMA expects to publish an update on the review within three months.