Wednesday, 1 July 2009

The great Michael Jackson ticket scam

LOS ANGELES - JUNE 23:  In this handout photo ...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

After the hoopla over Michael Jackson's demise last week, a thought was cast for the people actually putting on his audacious "get out of tax hell" series of concerts. The dancers, the set designers, the musicians, the bootleg t-shirt designers, the venue itself.

In order to claw some money back, the promoter is doing something really wrong. They're giving fans who bought tickets a choice - either a refund or a ticket. That's right - you can either get your £80ish plus all the service charges back, or get a souvenir ticket for the concert date and seat you would have had. The tickets will be a Michael Jackson design exclusive lenticular design, but it's a TICKET.

Of course, if tickets were bought from a third party, like ebay, etc. good luck seeing ANYTHING from that transaction.

The question then becomes how much is a useless concert ticket really worth? Many promoters and ticket issuers will say it's worth the £4-£10 service charge they add on to the price of the ticket and the promoters in this case would have been justified to offer the souvenir ticket for this fee giving the rest of the ticket price back as a refund.

However, I guess AEG and Ticketmaster believe that fans are paying £80ish for ticket and the concert just happens to be a free bonus. In that case, I'm glad to have seen all those free gigs and just wish I'd kept all the expensive bits of paper I'd bought.

This just has to be one of the worst cases of cashing in on celebrity death I've heard about in a long time.

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