Anyone who has had to buy tickets from Ticketmaster even once knows about the headaches such a procedure can cause, from the multitude of fees they layer on to each purchase to screwing up orders to their backhanded sister site that sold tickets to shows that they claimed were sold out but weren’t. The idea of Ticketmaster pairing with another music industry heel in concert promotions company Live Nation has struck cold fear into the hearts of concert goers across the country.
There have been attempts to stop the monopolization since the merger was first proposed, enough so that the two companies missed their targeted date, which was the end of 2009. These included open calls from Bruce Springsteen to oppose the merger, and the Competition Commission in England opposing the Merger to the federal government. Despite those efforts the U.K. did approve the deal late last month.
In the United States, it seems that the Department of Justice wants Ticketmaster and Live Nation to make certain concessions before considering passing the deal, which may include the sale of ticketing contracts and licensing software to competing concert promoters, which seems a bit weak considering just how much of the concert business would be consolidated if the merger were to pass. Listen to the Boss, Congress, he wrote “Thunder Road,” he knows his stuff. [Business Week]