The Cure vs Ticketmaster: Ticketing giant offers partial refunds to fans

The Cure’s Robert Smith has brought Ticketmaster to its knees. Sort of.
The Cure’s Robert Smith has brought Ticketmaster to its knees. Sort of. Copyright Getty Images
By David Mouriquand
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The ticketing giant has announced that it will partially refund fans who bought tickets for the band’s US tour.

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The Cure’s Robert Smith has brought Ticketmaster to its knees.

Well, it's a start at least. 

Following the frontman taking them to task over their “unduly high” fees that added up to more than the price of a ticket in “junk fees”, the ticketing giant has announced that it will refund fans who bought tickets for the band’s US tour.

Yesterday, Smith told fans that he was “as sickened as you all are” at the ludicrous additional fees, after complaints emerged that Ticketmaster fees, including service fee, facility charge and order processing fee, exceeded the price of actual tickets.

Smith issued an update: “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 (‘ltp’) transactions,” he wrote.

For all fans who bought more expensive tickets, Ticketmaster would issue a $5 refund per ticket for any show on the US tour, he added.

"If you already bought a ticket, you will get an automatic refund," Smith tweeted. "All tickets on sale tomorrow will incur lower fees," Smith added.

This is the latest backlash against Ticketmaster’s sales model. 

Several in-demand tours faced astronomical price increases due to dynamic ticketing and scalpers and musicians such as Bruce Springsteen and Taylor Swift have used the dynamic pricing system, which has seen individual tickets go for thousands of dollars.

Swift called the situation “excruciating” and said: “I’m not going to make excuses for anyone because we asked them, multiple times, if they could handle this kind of demand and we were assured they could” in a statement posted to Instagram.

Ticketmaster has been under fire for their business practices of late, facing multiple lawsuits and government inquiries in the US, with congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calling for a break-up of Ticketmaster and Live Nation, which merged in 2010, calling it a “monopoly”.

The Cure are about to start a 30-date tour across the US - their first US tour since 2016 - which is set to kick off on 10 May until 1 July. The band are expected to release their 14th studio album, 'Songs of a Lost World', later this year - their first since '4:13 Dream' in 2008.

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