Members of the Justice Department staff have asked whether Live Nation is complying with the agreement as a part of their recent inquiry, said one in all the individuals with knowledge of the matter. Officials on the agency have grown increasingly wary of such settlements, believing the very best strategy to settle antitrust concerns is thru changes to an organization’s structure.
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The debacle involving Ms. Swift’s concert tickets this week has exacerbated complaints within the music business and in Washington that Live Nation’s power has constrained competition and harmed consumers. However it was also an example of extraordinary demand for a highly desired commodity in very limited supply.
The issues began Tuesday when Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan system, which goals to weed out bots and skilled scalpers from the method, began doling out access codes to fans who were thinking about buying tickets to Ms. Swift’s Eras tour, scheduled to start out in March.
In response to a blog post by Ticketmaster, which was published on Thursday but deleted inside hours, 3.5 million fans registered for this system. The corporate “invited” 1.5 million of those customers to the presale by sending them codes, and the remaining two million were placed on a waiting list.
That day, Ticketmaster received 3.5 billion system requests, causing its app to crash for a lot of users; some who were within the means of buying tickets with their codes were unable to finish their transactions. In response to Ticketmaster, two million tickets were sold on Tuesday alone. One other presale, for Capital One cardholders, was held on Wednesday.
But Thursday afternoon, Ticketmaster canceled its plans for a public ticket sale on Friday, when it will typically sell any tickets remaining after presales. It was unclear what number of tickets had already been sold for Ms. Swift’s tour, and what number of — if any — remained.
On Friday, in her first comments in regards to the ticketing debacle, Ms. Swift posted an announcement to social media saying she was looking into the situation to see the way it could possibly be improved. But she also expressed disappointment in Ticketmaster.
“I’m not going to make excuses for anyone,” Ms. Swift wrote, “because we asked them, multiple times, in the event that they could handle this type of demand, and we were assured that they might.”