Chuck Schumer Teams Up With Lin-Manuel Miranda and ‘Hamilton’ To Fight Cyber Scalping

first_imgNew York’s Senator Chuck Schumer has started a new chapter in his campaign against ticket scalping bots. A long time friend of the ticket buying consumer, Schumer is fighting against cyber-scalpers who use these bots to take thousands of in-demand tickets to popular concerts and Broadway shows off the market before real fans have a chance to purchase them.Schumer enlisted the help of Hamilton creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda, to help get his point across. Hamilton has been plagued with ticketing issues, with tickets for the extremely in-demand Broadway show often ending up being resold at huge markups. The average $189 ticket can often go for anywhere between $500 and $2000, an absolutely ridiculous mark-up for a ticket that is already highly priced in an attempt to take advantage of a rabid market.New Petition Urges Congress To Pass Bipartisan Bill Banning Scalper BotsThe Senator’s office provided some shocking statistics to go along with this announcement to help drive the point home. Between 2012 and 2014, three scalpers bought more than 140,000 tickets to New York shows and concerts using bots. 20,000 tickets to Hamilton have been scalped because of bots. Shockingly enough, scalpers earned more than $15.5 million on Hamilton tickets from the time the show opened until Miranda’s last performance earlier this summer. Ticketmaster has stated that an estimated 60 percent of the best tickets to any event are purchased by bots. Schumer has put legislation forward that would stop the ridiculous and immoral use of software to work around securities employed by ticketing companies. If this law is passed, anyone who uses bots or other software to stop concertgoers from having a fair shot at purchasing tickets to an event will be subject to federal punishment. The bill is called the “Better On-line Ticket Sales Act of 2016”, otherwise known as the BOTS Act.Schumer said in a statement:“It’s plain and simple, we need to sweep the stage of bots so that actual fans can enjoy Hamilton, other hit Broadway shows and major concerts. Hackers and other bad actors are taking advantage of fans and we need to put a stop to it. These bots have gotten completely out of control and their dominance in the market is driving up prices for music and sports fans as well as tourists and theater-goers. This new legislation, now supported by Lin-Manuel Miranda, will crack down on online hackers and scalpers that use ‘bots’ to purchase thousands of tickets in a matter of milli-seconds, and then sell them at outrageously-inflated prices…By eliminating ‘bots’ and slapping hackers with a hefty fine, we can better ensure those who want to attend shows in the future will not have to pay outrageous, unfair prices. I hope that my colleagues in Congress will pass this bipartisan legislation so that consumers have equal access to these tickets.”One can only hope that this legislation passes, giving ticket purchasers protection under federal law and fundamentally changing the ticketing business in one fell swoop. Fans deserve a fair shot, and Senator Schumer is trying his hardest to give us that fair shot. Kudos to Senator Schumer for fighting for the people!last_img