Now All The Tickets to Taylor Swift's 2023 Concert Tour Have Been Sold, What Happens to Ticketmaster and Does The Government Step In To Break up Ticketmaster and Live Nation?

The Aftermath: Ticketmaster and Live Nation Could Be Broken Up

The music world is used to Taylor Swift writing about her past relationships. Well, she may have some more fodder to draw from as a result of the recent Ticketmaster ticket mess.

Entertainment powerhouse Live Nation joined forces with Ticketmaster in 2010, and the merger has often been the target of criticism not only from the industry but from the political sphere as well.

Live Nation and Ticketmaster May Stifle Healthy Competition

When a heavy hitter like Live Nation owns the venue and Ticketmaster has the monopoly on selling the tickets, bad things happen. Many people say this is un-American and offers no competition. Others accuse them of collusion.

The Swift fiasco only served to shine a light on the corporate abuse of power, drawing unambiguous calls to separate the companies. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, for one, called Ticketmaster a monopoly and tweeted that it needs to be separated from Live Nation to reign in their power.

There’s even an activist coalition called “Break Up Ticketmaster,” whose titular mission is self-evident.

Taylor Swift and Ticketmaster

Swift Speaks Out, Addressing Fans and Ticketmaster

Like many other artists whose live performances have been scandalized by ticketing issues, Taylor Swift swiftly expressed her dismay with the circumstances. She used words like “excruciating” and “pissed off,” claiming loyalty for her fanbase.

But while she didn’t defend Ticketmaster, she also didn’t sever ties with them. Swift has the kind of power and platform to bring a monopoly like Ticketmaster to its knees but at the end of the day she clearly doesn’t want to get her hands dirty.

Many Celebrity Acts Ask To Keep Ticket Prices Down But Fail To Put in Safeguards

A common refrain from celebrity acts (Swift, Springsteen) is that they want to keep ticket prices low for people to be able to afford them and not to damage their brand. Then ticket brokers buy up all the ticket inventory and they make a fortune by drip-feeding them back to the market and reselling the tickets at massively inflated prices.

Taylor Swift and Michael Rapino
Taylor Swift and Michael Rapino, president and CEO of Live Nation Entertainment

Swift Fails To Deliver A Sensible Ticket Approach

Broadway shows have shown that there are many better ways to combat these problems and the potential solutions scale pretty well, even for large concerts.

Swift could have insisted on names-on-tickets and Government ID checked at the door. She could also have done a lottery to decide who gets to buy tickets. Swift could have also “burned” broker tickets (The act of buying up all broker tickets and then canceling them on her end, resulting in a zero-sum game that destroys the ticket broker market).

She didn't do any of these things, so it's understandable that many fans are now critical of Swift.

Swifties Sue: Letting the Courts Decide

26 Swifties are even suing Ticketmaster, accusing Live Nation of anticompetitive conduct, an illegal practice of scalpers hoarding tickets and before regular buyers can purchase them. But the allegations go even deeper.

The group of fans put forth that Ticketmaster itself profits off the secondary marketplace and even conspired with stadiums for maximum bilking. The violations cited also include charges of intentionally and purposefully misleading consumers.

The complaint is currently seeking $2,500 per violation, which could add up to a huge fine given the millions who tried in vain to buy tickets for the concert tour.

Taylor Swift Ticketmaster
Taylor Swift and Ticketmaster Live Nation

Taylor Swift May Pretend To Care About The Fans, But Does She Really?

Swift and her team balked on actually doing anything concrete in response to the Ticketmaster ticket debacle, amid the huge financial windfall that she got out of this mess. Money talks, and it is currently speaking very loudly for her.

When it comes to Ticketmaster, perhaps the most apt refrain is one of Swift’s most recognizable: trouble, trouble, trouble! She loves to complain about him, but she still takes the boy home.