Lawmakers in Massachusetts have introduced legislation dubbed the ‘Taylor Swift Bill’ to ban dynamic pricing and force ticketing companies to offer ticket price transparency.
State Representative Dan Carey (D) and State Senator John Velis (D) introduced identical bills entitled “An Act Ensuring Transparent Ticket Pricing.” The bill would require all ticket-selling companies to disclose the total final cost of tickets including fees and surcharges before the ticket is selected for purchase.
“We heard from a lot of fans who were just frustrated with the ticket-selling process,” adds Representative Dan Carey. “This would be one tool in the toolbox to help know what the full price is right away, to see what portion is fees and what portion is the price of the ticket.”
The bills are collectively called the ‘Taylor Swift Bill’ after fans experienced frustrations in buying tickets to the pop singer’s latest Eras tour. The bill takes direct aim at the dynamic pricing model embraced by Ticketmaster, which allows ticket prices to fluctuate wildly based on demand. Extreme examples Digital Music News has highlighted of this pricing model include Bruce Springsteen tickets going for as low as $8 a seat in Oklahoma, or for $800 in New York and New Jersey (The Bosses’ hometown stomping ground).
It’s worth noting that these bills don’t address junk fees attached by ticketing services like Ticketmaster, either. “It just makes the customer aware of what the fees are at the outset and what portion of what you’re paying is a fee and what’s the ticket price,” Carey explains further.
“What this bill is at the most fundamental level is a consumer protection bill,” adds John Velis. “It enables folks to know their budget when they go in to buy these tickets and know that this is the amount they’re going to be asked to spend.”
Both bills have been referred to committees in their respective chambers for consideration. While this is happening at the state-level in Massachusetts, it highlights the increasing awareness of lawmakers about dynamic pricing and the paint points it causes for fans who feel like they’re being taken for a ride before they even buy the tickets.