Numerology: Ticket denied

470 per cent—That’s the premium ticket-seekers were facing on resale sites in January, only minutes after U2 seats went on sale for the May 12 concert at Vancouver’s BC Place. The rise of ticket-buying software—known as scalper bots—has been increasingly frustrating for out-of-luck fans, sparking demand for government action across North America. (Early last year, B.C. MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert repeated his 2009 call for anti-scalping legislation, and last fall Ontario and the U.S. announced plans to outlaw automated ticket buying.) Tim Silk, a senior instructor of marketing and behavioural science at UBC’s Sauder School of Business, says the practice is tough to police. But he thinks laws may be the only solution, given that concertgoers seem to prefer forking over cash to boycotting the show. “Fairness is always based on the norm, and over time, this is becoming normative,” Silk says. “If we don’t push back on it soon, it will eventually be accepted.”

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Sources: CTV News, Vancouver Courier, CBC News, The Economist, Creative BC/PwC, Insights West