Australia has failed to keep up with international efforts to combat ‘ticket bots’ which make it harder for genuine fans to buy tickets to popular shows.
New laws criminalising bots have just taken force in the UK overnight, and Live Performance Australia (LPA) has renewed its call for the Turnbull Government to support legislation which outlaws the use of ‘bots’ to buy tickets which are then resold on the secondary market, often at vastly inflated prices.
LPA Chief Executive Evelyn Richardson said ‘Ticket bots are a growing problem around the world. They are being used to scoop up large numbers of tickets to popular shows which make it harder for genuine fans to get tickets to see their favourite artists.’
‘Bot activity also affects the operation of ticketing websites, slowing down performance and making it harder for fans to complete their purchase.
‘For some popular shows, bots can make up the majority of visits to online ticketing sites,’ Ms Richardson said.
Ticketing companies are making significant investments to combat bot activity, but governments also need to get behind the campaign with effective legislation and enforcement.
‘Bots are a problem for all e-commerce businesses not just our industry. This is a global problem and the impact on fans is enormous. Ticketmaster has publicly reported that it blocked 5 billion attempts by bots to unfairly access their websites globally in 2015 and bot activity increased by 10 percent in 2016.
‘The UK and US have taken action, but the Turnbull Government is missing in action.
‘Bots are a global problem, and Australia should be part of the global response,’ Ms Richardson said.
LPA recently expressed its support for Senator Nick Xenophon’s motion to introduce legislation to ban ticket ‘bots’. That motion was supported by the Opposition, the Greens and Senators Lambie and Hinch but was opposed by the Government.
'Fans and artists in Australia - and around the world – should expect the Australian Government to be doing its part to fight the bots and ensure that genuine fans have fairer access to tickets,’ Ms Richardson said.
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