Use your Ed, Glas­gow

Sheeran backs calls for gig venues to tighten up over tick­ets

Daily Record - - NEWS -

ED SHEERAN has joined the clam­our for Scot­land’s big­gest venue to take a stand against ticket touts.

The world’s big­gest artist is back­ing the Record’s cam­paign to per­suade the SSE Hy­dro to bring in a tick­et­ing op­er­a­tion that locks out touts and pro­tects fans.

The burn­ing is­sue that has en­raged live mu­sic fans was ig­nited last week when Glas­gow City Coun­cil leader Su­san Aitken promised to probe the re­la­tion­ship be­tween Tick­et­mas­ter and their tout sub­sidiary Get Me In! at the SSE Hy­dro.

When a five-year deal was signed be­tween the Hy­dro – which is 90 per cent coun­cil owned – and Live Na­tion-owned Tick­et­mas­ter in 2014, bosses were warned the re­la­tion­ship would re­sult in a tout­fest. As pre­dicted BY MARK MCGIVERN Chief Re­porter by ma­jor pro­mot­ers, the SSE Hy­dro – one of the busiest are­nas in the world – be­came the main hunt­ing ground in Scot­land for touts from around the world.

Shape of You singer Ed, whose cur­rent tour is one of the big­gest in his­tory, has been at the van­guard of anti-tout mea­sures, en­forc­ing rules that for­bid sell­ing on briefs on sites like Get Me In! and toxic ri­val Vi­a­gogo.

His man­ager Stu­art Camp told the Record the Hy­dro should take a leaf from the book of the O2 Arena and SSE Wem­b­ley Arena in London.

The venues, owned by Live Na­tion’s ma­jor global ri­val AEG, just an­nounced they would cap prof­its on re­sale at 10 per cent via their in-house AXS ticket op­er­a­tion and Flash Seats tech­nol­ogy.

Stu­art said: “It’s with great in­ter­est we’ve been mon­i­tor­ing what has been hap­pen­ing at the 02. It would be such a big step for­ward if ev­ery venue, in­clud­ing the SSE Hy­dro, was to fol­low its lead.”

The Record’s Stub Out the Touts cam­paign has made it crys­tal clear that real fans are be­ing abused.

We have told how touts have made mil­lions us­ing com­puter trick­ery and sneaky tac­tics, in­clud­ing the use of mul­ti­ple iden­ti­ties and scores of credit cards in the names of em­ploy­ees, fam­ily and friends. Bri­tain’s top author­ity on ticket abuse Reg Walker, of the Irid­ium Con­sul­tancy, be­lieves the Hy­dro must fol­low the lead of the O2.

Walker said: “It is the big­gest game-changer in tick­et­ing for a gen­er­a­tion and the ques­tion must be asked as to why the Glas­gow Hy­dro and other venues are not bring­ing in sim­i­lar mea­sures?”

Adam Webb, of pres­sure group FanFair Al­liance, said the UK tick­et­ing world is chang­ing fast.

He said: “The UK tick­et­ing busi­ness is shift­ing to­wards more con­sumer-friendly forms of re­sale, so it’s hardly sur­pris­ing that ques­tions are be­ing raised about the Hy­dro.

“We would love to see Tick­et­mas­ter fol­low suit and stop pro­mot­ing a ser­vice de­pen­dent on high-vol­ume com­mer­cial sellers who rip off gen­uine fans.”

It’s the big­gest gamechanger in tick­et­ing REG WALKER ON O2 ARENA PRIC­ING CAP

FANS FIRST Ed Sheeran has been en­forc­ing rules to pre­vent the sell-on of tick­ets. Pic: WireI­mage FOL­LOW THE LEAD The SSE Hy­dro should im­ple­ment rules like the O2 in London

SUP­PORT Stu­art Camp

PROBE Su­san Aitken

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