Ticketmaster is Giving Out Free Tickets… But Will You See Anyone Good?
Unless you’re one of those “live shows aren’t my thing” people (P.S. I don’t get you), you’re probably a beneficiary in a recent class-action settlement from Ticketmaster.
“Standing for all consumers who bought tickets on Ticketmaster's website from Oct. 21, 1999, through Feb. 27, 2013, the California-based plaintiffs alleged that the description of Ticketmaster's fees was deceptive and misleading,” reports Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jonathan Takiff.
Well, yeah. Anyone who’s ever spent $100 on a $65 ticket can commiserate on the topic of Ticketmaster’s fees.
And since the suit covers such a wide range of time, you’ll get to cash in for your suffering -- whether you spent your money seeing Beyoncé solo a few years ago or with Destiny’s Child back in 2003.
Just don’t expect very much compensation. In fact, this may just be the worst class-action settlement we’ve ever seen.
Ticketmaster’s Clever -- but Crappy -- Class-Action Settlement
In an astounding display of ripping customers off even further under the guise of compensating for their shady policies, Ticketmaster has agreed -- without admitting wrongdoing -- to supply 57 million eligible customers with discount coupons against fees on future orders.
That’s right, you have to buy additional tickets through Ticketmaster to benefit from the suit.
But wait, there’s more!
Those discount coupons will save you the hefty sum of… $2.25.
Yup. You’ll get less than a fiver back for Ticketmaster’s ambiguous wording on its exorbitant fees. And the benefits don’t kick in until June 18, so don’t plan on taking two bucks off the top of that concert ticket you’re buying this weekend.
If your cell phone is as much of a throwback as “Say My Name” -- and thus precludes mobile ticket entry -- you can also benefit from a $5 shipping credit… so long as you used UPS delivery on the order that qualifies you for the suit.
Two of these shipping codes can be applied to the same order, meaning Ticketmaster is offering a generous $10 credit for a service no one uses anymore.
It’s pretty bad, right?
Well, the good news is, if everyone bands together (see what I did there?) and refuses to take advantage of this “benefit,” we might get something marginally better.
“The same email also discusses a Ticket Code ‘potentially redeemable’ for two tickets to a concert event presented by Live Nation,” writes Takiff.
In order for those codes to activate, class members will have to use up less than $42.5 million in total -- or $10.5 million per year -- of the $397 million available in measley coupon codes.
We’d have to hold off on the fee discounts until June 2017, however. Plus, Live Nation gets to decide which events would be included in the Ticket Code offer… and their tastes probably don’t match those of all 57 million eligible consumers.
Everyone Loves a Free Concert… Right?
Ticketmaster will soon reveal a selection of concerts where you’ll be able to use your Ticket Codes.
To view your potential benefits, log into your account at Ticketmaster.com and click on “Active Vouchers” on the bottom left of the page.
If you’ve got a Ticket Code, you’ll be able to redeem it for two general-admission tickets to one of these upcoming “free” concerts.”
The trick is your concert options will take place only at Live Nation-owned or operated venues.
Since Ticketmaster hasn’t revealed any of the acts you’ll be able to “spend” your settlement on, we’re guessing they’re still figuring out who they can get to play on the cheap.
So don’t anticipate seeing Beyonce on your free ticket. Maybe the rest of Destiny’s Child?
Aw, heck. It’s cheaper to just stay home anyway. Who’s got Spotify?
Your Turn: What millennium-era concert did you attend to qualify for these “benefits”?
Jamie Cattanach (@jamiecattanach) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. Her creative writing has been featured in “DMQ Review,” “Sweet: A Literary Confection” and elsewhere.