Live Nation, Ticketmaster Accused of Destroying Mountains of Evidence

Live Nation and Ticketmaster Accused of Destroying Documents in Anti-Trust Suit

‘Software shredders on aisle 17’ by Paul L Dineen (CC by 2.0)

Live Nation and Ticketmaster destroying documents in an anti-trust suit? That was easy.

Back in December, Live Nation and its subsidiary Ticketmaster, were sued by Complete Entertainment Resources for allegedly taking part in unfair and anticompetitive behavior.  These moves were aimed that eliminating and/or minimizing competitors, which included the company, better known as Songkick.  Songkick is a presale ticket seller.

The lawsuit lists an example of an anticompetitive act Ticketmaster engaged in.  The artist had announced a presale for a concert through Songkick.  An artist’s featured page on Ticketmaster’s website was removed.  The artist’s name will not be revealed until a protective order is in place.

When the artist complained, he or she received the following statement:

“[A]rtists/tours who keep 100% of their tickets on the TM platform are able to unlock the home page placement marketing asset…we will not be able to offer homepage placement for [the artist’s] tour at this time.”

In May, Songkick suffered a setback when a judge denied the company’s preliminary injunction from Ticketmaster’s service fees. District Court Central California Judge Dale S. Fischer explained,

[Songkick] has failed to show virtually any likelihood of success on the merits and has only made a weak showing, at best, as to irreparable harm

However, Songkick told a federal court last Wednesday that Live Nation Entertainment and Ticketmaster knowingly engaged in destroying evidence related to the anti-trust suit.

In a proposed motion to compel, Songkick is asking the court to order the defendants to submit to a forensic search, or a forensic image of their computer systems for documents no later than November 15, 2016.  The proposed forensic search will include

“all share drives, individual desktop computers, laptops, servers, databases, tablet computers, and all other computer system locations reasonably likely to hold responsive documents.”

If granted, the cost for this forensic search will be borne by Live Nation and Ticketmaster.

The documents Songkick accuses of possibly being destroyed are:

  1. Artist-by-artists and concert-by-concert charges by the defendants to artists for artist presales.
  2. All documents showing revenues and profits from defendants’ artist presale ticketing services.
  3. Ticketmaster’s concert venue ticketing services’ quarterly and annual revenues, expenses, and profits.

It’s not known yet if a California judge will rule in favor of Songkick’s request. Live Nation and Ticketmaster have yet to file any legal response to this request. You can check out the proposed motion to compel below.

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