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MUSIC

Robert Smith calls out Louisiana’s scalper-friendly bill

The Cure frontman has been a vocal advocate against ticket reselling.

Update:
The Cure frontman has been a vocal advocate against ticket reselling.
@thecure

Robert Smith’s continuing contempt of scalpers, or ticket resellers, has found a new target. The state of Louisiana is reportedly considering a new bill that would limit ticket reselling between fans.

The bill comes as The Cure is set to begin their ‘Shows of a Lost World Tour’ in New Orleans on Wednesday, May 10, and after the band’s efforts to stop scalpers from getting their hands on tickets.

Robert Smith calls on Louisiana lawmakers to not pass the bill

Smith took to Twitter to share news of bill HB#341 which seeks to ban fan-to-fan exchanges that the band has encouraged for their upcoming tour.

“THE LOUISIANA LEGISLATURE (HB #341) IS CONSIDERING A RESELLERS-BACKED BILL TO BAN FAN-TO-FAN EXCHANGES (LIKE THE ONE WE ARE USING ON OUR 2023 NORTH AMERICAN TOUR TO TRY AND LIMIT/STOP SCALPING AND BOTS),” Smith wrote in a series of tweets. The bill has already passed the House and is now up for consideration in the state Senate.

“THERE IS A HEARING THIS WEDNESDAY MORNING… LOUISIANA LAWMAKERS! PLEASE DON’T PASS THIS BILL! EMPOWER THE ARTISTS, NOT THE SCALPERS AND THE BOTS!” the singer implored.

COMMERCIAL LOBBYING CORRUPTS DEMOCRACY X,” he added.

What is bill HB#341?

The bill was first introduced on March 29 and was passed in the House on April 19. The bill is sponsored by Republican Paula P. Davis. The abstract for the bill reads, “Provides for the resale of certain entertainment and sporting event tickets.”

Throughout the bill, it becomes clear that it aims to reform the ticket reselling platform as it currently exists in Louisiana.

“Additionally, proposed law defines ‘nontransferable ticketing’ as prohibiting the resell or exchange of a ticket or limiting the ticket holder to exchange the ticket exclusively through means provided by the ticket issuer,” the bill states.

But what’s worrisome is what the bill proposes: “Proposed law provides that a ticket issuer may use a nontransferable ticketing system only if the ticket holder is offered to purchase the same ticket in a transferable form at the initial time of sale.

The wording suggests that ticket sales between scalpers and fans would become easier to enact with fewer restrictions.

How has The Cure worked to stop scalpers?

The Cure has tried to circumvent the work of scalpers by using Ticketmaster’s Verified fan service, which is essentially a lottery system that gives an exclusive code that is tied to a specific Ticketmaster account.

Scalpers still managed to find ways to bypass Verified Fan. Over 7,000 scalped tickets were canceled when it was discovered that scalpers began selling Ticketmaster accounts that had purchased tickets for the tour.

But The Cure doesn’t only have issues with scalpers. Smith personally went out of his way to question Ticketmaster’s exorbitant fees, which doubled the final ticket prices, which The Cure attempted to keep low.

Ticketmaster ended up giving out partial refund fees to fans as a result of Smith’s efforts.