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Ticketmaster shuts down UK ticket resale sites, launches 'fan-to-fan' exchange

Seatwave and Get Me In will be no more.

Ticketmaster will launch a fan-to-fan ticket exchange in October.

Ticketmaster UK announced Monday that it's shutting down its second-hand ticket reselling sites and will launch a fan-to-fan ticket exchange on its site later this year.

You won't be able to buy tickets for any new events on Seatwave or Get Me In from Monday and the new site will launch in the UK and Ireland in October. It'll roll out across Europe in early 2019, the company said in a blog post. It added that the decision was the result of negative customer feedback based on tickets getting snapped up and resold for a profit.

"All we want is you, the fan, to be able to safely buy tickets to the events you love," Ticketmaster wrote.

"So, we're launching a fan-to-fan ticket exchange on Ticketmaster, where you can easily buy tickets or sell tickets you can't use through our website or app, at the price originally paid or less."

Ticketmaster didn't immediately respond to a request for additional details about the exchange.

This is the latest move in ticketing industry's fight against scalpers. Professional scalpers, or touts, use bots to scoop up tickets to big events the moment they go on sale before selling them for huge markups.

In 2015, the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) forced Seatwave and Get Me In to remove hidden charges, inform consumers about ticket restrictions and offer buyers more information, Engadget notes

In April, it also got those sites and StubHub to commit to giving consumers additional information, such as the exact location of the seat the ticket they're buying is for and the seller's identity.

"We are clear that all resale ticketing sites should play by the rules and treat their customers fairly. We took enforcement action against Ticketmaster's Get Me In and Seatwave earlier this year to ensure they provide better information about tickets being resold on their sites," a CMA spokesperson said of Ticketmaster's announcement Monday.

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"Ticketmaster has also committed to making sure its new resale site will comply with consumer law by providing clear information about the tickets on offer so people can judge whether they're getting a good deal."

In June, the eBay-owned company StubHub's introduced a new pricing assistant tool to help US sellers set better prices with data science that provides a recommended price range. 

First published at 4:10 a.m. PT.
Updated at 7:10 a.m. PT: Adds CMA comment.

US law bans ticket-buying software: A 2016 law attempted to combat scalpers.

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