DOJ Turns the Screws on Live Nation — Sends New Batch of Info Requests in Ongoing Investigation

Live Nation DOJ investigation
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Live Nation DOJ investigation
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Photo Credit: Live Nation

The Department of Justice sends out a new batch of information requests in its ongoing investigation into Live Nation and Ticketmaster’s alleged anti-competitive behavior.

The US Department of Justice has sent out another batch of information requests as part of its ongoing investigation into allegations of anti-competitive behavior against Live Nation and Ticketmaster, according to Bloomberg.

Officials in the DOJ’s Antitrust Division “have become frustrated” with how slowly Ticketmaster executives have responded to previous requests for information in an investigation that could still result in legal action against the ticketing giant.

Investigators are looking into whether the live event company is compliant in the consent decree, to which it agreed when the government approved the Ticketmaster and Live Nation merger in 2010. The merger’s approval was contingent on Live Nation complying with the terms of the decree, which implemented restrictions on the relationship between the company’s tour promotion and venue businesses.

Initially, the decree was meant to be in place for ten years — but the agreement was extended by another five years at the end of 2019, following allegations that Live Nation was in violation of the decree. Live Nation has long denied all allegations of anti-competitive conduct.

Public interest in the investigation seemed to reignite in 2022 following the outcry resulting from the Ticketmaster outage during the initial sale of tickets for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour. But the DOJ investigation predates that incident.

At the time, Senators accused Live Nation of “egregiously stonewalling” the government’s investigation into so-called abusive consumer practices. Live Nation insisted the Senate committee had failed to provide assurances that the “commercially sensitive” information requested would remain confidential.

Reports began surfacing that the DOJ might file a lawsuit against Live Nation before the end of 2023, but since the investigation has been extended, legal action could still take place by the end of 2024.