How The Ticketmaster Scam Works

Sep 30,2018

A series of allegations against American ticket outlet - Ticketmaster have surfaced after an undercover investigation proved what were previously just rumours.  CBC News and Toronto Stars sent in undercover journalists as scalpers who were then reportedly directed to underground professional ticket resellers by Ticketmaster.


The Scalpers

Scalpers have long been the bane of the ticketing industry since they purchase large quantities of tickets early with the sole intention of re-selling them at a higher price, at a later date. Ticketmaster has been publicly critical of scalpers and called for strict laws. 



Ticketmaster is so large that it essentially has a monopoly on all kinds of events in numerous countries and if scalpers get their way then most popular events are sold out in a few minutes and fans are left stranded with no tickets at all.


The Double Dip Trick

Instead of effectively policing their invite-only TradeDesk platform, Ticketmaster aids scalpers in purchasing large batches of tickets and reselling them on TradeDesk where Ticketmaster earns a percentage off of every sale. Ticketmaster not only gains revenue from the original sale but also from the more expensive resale. Yes, it's a classic double dip.

Despite running a ‘buyer abuse’ section that looks for suspicious activity, Ticketmaster has failed to report TradeDesk users with multiple accounts who only purchase tickets in order to flip them for a higher price.


Ticketmaster, a live entertainment subsidiary is one of the largest distributors of tickets worldwide, including the UAE. The company has maintained its innocence and announced a review of reseller accounts as they ready themselves to face a $100 million class-action lawsuit.