Nolte: The Cure Forced Ticketmaster to Refund Portion of Outrageous Fees

The Cure perform at Reading Festival 2012 - 24/08/12
Andy Sheppard/Redferns via Getty Images

The robber barons at Ticketmaster charged some Cure fans more in service fees than the cost of the ticket.

Get a load of these chiselers:

Outraged fans started sharing the evidence on social media. For instance, one screenshot showed a $11.65 service fee and $10 facility charge per ticket, plus an overall order processing fee of $5.50, being levied for those using Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan program. The total cost for four $20 tickets amounted to more than $172.

Imagine you buy four tickets for a total of $80, and these thieves charge you $172.

The good news is that—unlike greed kingpin Bruce Springsteen—The Cure stepped in on behalf of their fans and shamed Ticketmaster into granting some partial refunds. The Cure’s Robert Smith announced this Thursday with two tweets:

After further conversation, Ticketmaster have agreed with us that many of the fees being charged are unduly high, and as a gesture of goodwill have offered a $10 per ticket refund to all verified fan accounts for lowest ticket price transactions and a $5 per ticket refund to all verified fan accounts for all other ticket price transactions, for all Cure shows at all venues; if you already bought a ticket you will get an automatic refund; all tickets on sale tomorrow will incur lower fees.

In general, Ticketmaster is now charging four separate fees above and beyond taxes and the purchase price. There’s a service fee, an order processing fee, a delivery fee, and a facility charge. This doesn’t count the “surge” pricing that lifted Springsteen tickets into the thousands of dollars, something the “working class hero” actually defended.

For its part, Ticketmaster has not only been engaging in this indefensible behavior for two decades, but the outlet’s behavior has also gotten worse… And despite the best efforts of some good guys, like The Cure (such a great band) and Pearl Jam, nothing changes, nothing improves, the crony capitalism and institutional corruption march on because all the “right people” are getting rich…err, I mean richer.

How is it possible in a free country that Ticketmaster sucks as bad as it does and holds on to its monopoly? Ticketmaster is like a government program, not a business operating in a free economy.

Ticketmaster sure stole my share of money over the decades. My wife and I were avid concertgoers. We saw everyone… Springsteen, Petty, Tina Turner, Neil Diamond, Rod Stewart, Aerosmith, Santana… many of them more than once. While I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything, knowing Ticketmaster took advantage of us has always left a bad taste in those memories.

I also wouldn’t trade free market capitalism for any other system in the world. It has literally cured poverty and given me and mine a quality of life no pharaoh ever enjoyed. None of that makes the sin of greed okay.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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