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Lawmakers introduced a new bill on Thursday targeting disclosure of ticket fees in an effort to increase transparency in the entertainment industry.

“Transparency of Fees for Major Events Tickets Act,” or Ticket law, similar to current advertising guidelines for airline tickets, which require disclosure of the full ticket price prior to purchase. Reps. Jan Schakowsky, D-Fla., and Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., co-sponsor the bill.

“Fans are incredibly frustrated with the difficulty of purchasing tickets to events. With every ticket-buying disaster, from Beyoncé to Taylor Swift, and many more, their frustration grows,” Schakowski said in a statement. “Consumers deserve protection from ticket fraud, surge costs and excess fees.”

The bill is a companion to legislation introduced by Sens. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Maria Cantwell, D-Wash, chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, in April. Its release follows a subcommittee hearing on regulating surcharges or “unwanted” fees, which have become a particular focus of Biden administration.

“The price, as they say, has to be the price you pay,” Cantwell said during Thursday’s hearing. It can be added to that, but it must be disclosed.

The House bill reverses the Senate’s action in mandating ticket sellers to display the total price of a ticket, including all required fees, in any advertisement or piece of marketing.

A detailed list of the base ticket price and associated fees must also be disclosed at the outset of purchase, according to the invoice, and sellers must also be upfront about “speculative” tickets not in the seller’s possession.

Bilirakis said the bill would bring “much needed transparency to the entire ticketing industry”.

“There is nothing more disappointing than being lured into the prospect of an affordable ticket to watch your favorite sports team or squad only to learn later in the check-out process that the final price is much higher,” he added, adding that he is “committed to working toward reforms that protect consumers and provide certainty in market”.

Schakowski and Bilirakis cited studies from New York Attorney General’s Office and the Government Accountability Office Show ticket fees can contribute anywhere from 21% to 58% of the total cost of tickets.

Ticket sites and their associated fees have come under intense scrutiny in recent months, spurred largely by Ticketmaster’s flopped showing of Taylor Swift’s “Eras Tour” late last year. The site collapsed under overwhelming demand, prompting antitrust action against the parent company live nation.


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