Stop Ticket Scalping in Australia

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Legislation and Reports

The Australian Consumer Law ( ACL ) is the current applicable Federal Law that Ticket Scalpers are breaking when they on-sell tickets above face or original purchase value.  Sadly though, it is VERY DIFFICULT  to enforce the Act.

It is VITAL that listings or advertisements for tickets being sold, have the Seat number and Price in the ADVERTISEMENT.   Why?  The “whistle blower” can then report the Seller to the AUTHORISED TICKET SELLER and to the EVENT ORGANISER   and   to the  AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION .

Please click on the Link below for info about the  ACL.

https://stopticketscalpingaustralia.wordpress.com/2012/07/28/the-law-part-two/#

Press the Ctrl and Plus + Keys on your keyboard to Magnify this post.  The size of the text in this Post is set by the WordPress template, and can’t be made larger, sorry.

To read the full State Laws see the RESOURCES   page of this blog.

Commonwealth Reports

The “Ticket Scalping Report 2010” was published by the Commonwealth Consumer Affairs Advisory Council to investigate ticket scalping and came to the conclusion that the laws of Australia adequately address ticket scalping.  See the posts titled “The Law part one” and “The Law part two” for further information about this report.

 

The Australian Senate Economics Reference Committee published an enquiry into Ticket Scalping in March 2013.  Click on the Link below to read the Report.

http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Economics/Ticket_scalping_2013/Report/index

READ THIS PAGE HERE  (scroll to the bottom) for more info about the ERC Report.

Summary of Legislation By State

New South Wales

New South Wales has the Major Events Act 2009 No 73, which in part states:

 41 Commercial and other activities

(1) A person must not do any of the following at a major event venue or facility, except as authorised by the responsible authority:

(a) provide, or offer to provide, any services for fee, gain or reward,

(b) sell or attempt to sell a ticket for admission to a major event venue or facility,

(c) use any audio, loudspeaker or broadcasting equipment or camera (whether photographic, cinematic or video) for a commercial purpose,

(d) damage, destroy or remove any building, structure or equipment, (e) leave any rubbish or litter, except in a receptacle provided for the purpose,

(f) collect or attempt to collect money from members of the public,   [  more follow ]

The Definitions on page 4 say the following about a “major event venue or facility”

For the purposes of this Act, a major event venue or facility is:
(a) any of the following that have been declared to be a major event
venue or facility by the Minister by order published in the
Gazette:
(i) a venue or facility used for the conduct of a major event,
(ii) a media centre or other communications facility for the
media for a major event,
(iii) lodgings and other accommodation for persons attending a
major event,
(iv) transport and other physical infrastructure associated with
a major event,
(v) any other development (within the meaning of the
Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979)
determined by the Minister to be required for, or is
associated with, a major event, and
(b) any public place, or any part of a public place, that is within
50 metres of a major event venue or facility, being a public place,
or part of a public place, that is specified or described in an order
of the Minister published in the Gazette, and
(c) any place prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this
subsection,
but is only such a venue or facility during the relevant major event
period.

Page 3 defines a “Major Event”

major event means an event that is declared under Part 2 to be a major
event.

Good luck with finding out what Events in NSW are “declared major events”.  To date, STSA found only one applicable Regulation on the Legislation page.  The Minister administering The Major Events act 2009 of NSW is currently the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing.

http://www.legislation.nsw.gov.au/maintop/epub      The Act

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/nsw/consol_reg/   The Regulations

Click on M for “Major Events” regulations.  If you don’t see “Major Events” in the List, that means there is likely NO declared Major Event at the time the Regulations were updated.

You can try  THIS   link here to search for “in force” Regulations using the Search terms  MAJOR EVENTS  to find a declared Major Event in N.S.W.  It looks like, however, that they are rare as Hen’s teeth!!

 

 UPDATE:  31 May 2014

The New South Wales Fair Trading Amendment Ticket Reselling Bill 2013 will legislate for advertisements of all tickets being offered for sale to events within NSW to include the seat number and the terms & conditions of sale of the ticket.

To view all posts related to NSW please click  HERE

 

Victoria

Ticket-scalping is illegal for certain major sporting events (in person or via online means), including the AFL Grand Final, under Victoria’s Major Sporting Events Act 2009.   This Act allows for tickets to certain events to include terms and conditions that prohibit or restrict those tickets from being sold or distributed for more than their face value without the written authorisation of the sports event organiser.  It is similiar to the effect of the NSW legislation, except the NSW Act seems to cover ONLY ticket scalping in person at the venues (and not online).

Part 9 on page 122 of the Act talks about Sports Ticketing Event declarations. The following applies to a declared Sports Ticketing Event.

166 Selling event tickets contrary to the ticket conditions

(1) Subject to subsection (2), if—

(a) an approved ticket scheme for a sports ticketing event requires a condition that prohibits or restricts the sale or distribution

of the ticket by a person who is not authorised in writing to sell or distribute tickets on behalf of the sports event organiser

to be printed on the ticket; and

(b) the condition is printed on a ticket to the sports ticketing event—

a person must not, without reasonable excuse, knowingly contravene the condition.

Penalty: 60 penalty units, in the case of a natural person; 300 penalty units, in the case of a body

(2) If a person is guilty of more than one offence against subsection (1) in respect of a particular sports ticketing event held on a particular day, the total fine payable by the person for those offences must not exceed—

(a) 600 penalty units in the case of a natural

person; or

(b) 3000 penalty units in the case of a body

 

The 2003 to 2014 AFL Grand Finals, the 2009 and 2010 Australian Masters  Golf, the 2011 Presidents Cup and the Melbourne matches of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 have been declared Sports Ticketing Events.  In preparation for a declared event, advertisements are placed in major newspapers across the country, as well as in relevant event programs to assist in ensuring that the public are aware that the event is declared under the Act.

For example, before the AFL Grand Final in September 2012, the Minister issued a media release warning people that under the act, individuals caught scalping tickets faced fines of up to $8,450 per offence, or $84,504 for multiple offences. The words ‘declared event’ are printed on the front of tickets sold or distributed to the event.

Source:   Senate Economics Reference Committee, Australia, March 2014

Senate Com Report, p 38

Queensland

Section 4 of the Major Sports Facilities Act 2001 ( see the Resources section of this Blog to read the whole Act ) is about the “Declaration of major sports facilities“.

4(1) A regulation may declare a facility that has the capacity to stage national or international sports, recreational or entertainment events, or special events, to be a major sports facility.
4(2) On the making of the declaration, property in the facility vests in the Authority.

A list of venues that are “major sports facilities” according to the Regulations under this Act can be found at the link below.

http://www.stadiums.qld.gov.au/Our-Venues.aspx

Clause 30 of the QueenslandMajor Sports Facilities Act 2001” states in part that:

A person must not, within or outside Queensland, resell a ticket to a major sports facility event at a price greater than 10% above the original ticket price of the ticket, or purchase a a ticket to a major sports facility event at a price greater than 10% above the original ticket price.

A person must not, within or outside Queensland, purchase a ticket to a major sports facility event from a person, other than the event’s organiser or an authorised ticket agent for the event, at a price greater than 10% above the original ticket price of the ticket.

Western Australia

Western Australia only has the The Public Trading Local Law 2005 which prevents the scalping and on selling of tickets in public areas in the City of Perth, without a trading permit.  This Act does not cover such sales via the internet.

South Australia

UPDATE May 2014:   South Australia has passed the Major Events Act 2013.   Similar to the Victorian law, it states that certain events can be declared by Regulation to be a “major event”.  In this case, the declaration is made by the Governor of South Australia.  Section 9 states:

9—Ticket scalping
(1) A person must not, without the written approval of the event organiser for a major event to which this section is declared to apply—
(a) in a controlled area for the event—sell or offer for sale a ticket for admission to the event; or
(b) in any other case, sell or offer for sale a ticket for admission to the event at a price which exceeds the original ticket price by more than 10%.
Maximum penalty:
(a) in the case of a body corporate—$25 000;
(b) in the case of a natural person—$5 000.
(2) Subsection (1) places an evidential burden on the accused to show that the accused
had the approval of the event organiser.
(3) In this section—
original ticket price, in relation to a ticket for admission to an event, means the price for which the ticket was purchased when first offered for retail sale by or on behalf of the event organiser (and includes, if a booking fee or other commission was payable to the ticket seller in relation to that sale, the amount of that fee or commission).

Click on the Link below to access the South Australian Major Events Act 2013 AND the subordinate Regulations. 

http://www.legislation.sa.gov.au/LZ/C/A/MAJOR%20EVENTS%20ACT%202013.aspx

Fortunately, the South Australia Regulations are also clearly listed on the following page of Regulations.  If you type “Major Events” into the Search box, it will return the Regulations which prescribe major events in South Australia since the Act was enacted.

http://www.legislation.sa.gov.au/listYearRegulations.aspx?key=y2014

At the time of this update, the Rolling Stones concert and the Santos Tour Down Under tour are “declared major events.”  Click on the current year at the top, e.g. 2016 then do a search ( “Find” ) for MAJOR EVENTS  to find declared major events for the year.

Read  HERE  what the Legal Services Commission of South Australia has to say about the SA law.

 

NOTE

From the information to date, the applicable State laws in W.A. and N.S.W. are the weakest, as in this digital age, they don’t provide for (include) online / internet selling or selling via non person to person means.   Western Australia’s law only covers events within the Perth CBD so doesn’t take into account big venues outside of the city, such as the Bunbury Entertainment Centre.

Note, that the Victorian law only covers the AFL (Australian Football League) Grand Final, the NRL (National Rugby League) Grand Final and the Golf Masters sporting events, nothing else at the moment (as “declared major sporting events” per the Victorian legislation).

 

The Department of Commerce has a PDF Guideline about Ticket Scalping available  HERE

 For full access to State Laws – see the   RESOURCES   page of this blog

 

National Legislation

The Trade Practices Act 1974 (TPA) has been re-named the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, and contains the Australian Consumer Law or the ACL, which is set out in Schedule 2 of the C&C Act.

The Competition and Consumer Act 2010.  The ACL is set out in Schedule 2 of the C&C Act.

The Australian Consumer Law ( ACL) became effective Australia wide in 2011

The ACL includes:

  • a new national unfair contract terms law covering standard form contracts;
  • a new national law guaranteeing consumer rights when buying goods and services, which replaces existing laws on conditions and warranties;
  • a new national product safety law and enforcement system;
  • a new national law for unsolicited consumer agreements, which replaces existing State and Territory laws on door-to-door sales and other direct marketing;
  • simple national rules for lay-by agreements; and
  • new penalties, enforcement powers and consumer redress.

 

IMPORTANT:  PLEASE READ THIS PAGE FOR INFO ABOUT THE ACL

 

STSA would like to know if any of the other States (NT, ACT, & Tasmania) have any legislation at all to prevent at least some ticket scalping.

STSA contends that the ACL does not prevent/deter ticket scalping, and is looking for a law student/lawyer to help interpret the applicable laws –  see the link “ Help STSA” on the left.  Thank you.

 

More information about the legislation can be found on the various posts on this site, e.g. “The Law part one” and “The Law part two.

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One comment on “Legislation and Reports

  1. Michelle D
    27/10/2012

    Scalping Against Policy Links:
    • Illegal in QLD: http://www.stadiums.qld.gov.au/Policies/Ticket-Scalping.aspx
    • eBay Policy #1: http://pages.ebay.com.au/help/policies/contracts.html
    • eBay Policy #2: http://pages.ebay.com.au/help/policies/event-tickets.html
    • Ticketek Terms Of Sale: http://premier.ticketek.com.au/Content/buyers/termsofsale.aspx > Points 7 & 8
    • Ticketek FAQs: http://premier.ticketek.com.au/Content/Help/faqs.aspx#faq13 > ‘Online Auction Sites & Scalping – The can and cannot do’s with Ticketek tickets’ > ‘What does Ticketek do to prevent scalping?’
    • TicketMaster Purchase Policy: http://www.ticketmaster.com.au/h/purchase.html > ‘Unlawful Re-Sale of Tickets; Commercial Purposes’
    • TicketMaster Terms of Use: http://www.ticketmaster.com.au/h/terms.html > ‘Unauthorised Use of the Site’
    • Live Performance Australia Codes & Guidelines: http://www.liveperformance.com.au/default.aspx?s=codes_guidelines > Ticketing Code of Practice – Consumer Version – 1 Feb 2012 > Points 8 & 10.

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