DENVER (CBS4) – Management for Denver’s newest state-of-the-art music venue, the Mission Ballroom, is battling back against scalpers, hoping to create greater opportunity for affordable shows. AEG Presents Rocky Mountains, which oversees the newly-opened property, has staff members combing through ticket buyers in an attempt to locate those who are breaking the ticket buying rules in order to make a personal profit.
Don Strasburg, co-president of AEG Presents Rocky Mountains, told CBS4’s Dillon Thomas his staff is able to identify hundreds of tickets that are going to buyers breaking rules. The venue often places caps on how many tickets and individual, or household, can purchase.
By coming through the IP addresses, the home addresses listed for billing, names and more, the venue can identify those who purchased too many tickets.
“Often, we see people put in fake names to buy tickets. But, when you see a name like ‘Fighter Pilot’ buying 16 tickets from Birmingham, Alabama it is pretty obvious. ‘Snow White’ is a very popular ticket buyer. Snow White gets swept,” Strasburg said.
When AEG sweeps a buyer, that means they cancel the ticket orders and reclaim the tickets. They then resell the tickets at face value to concert goers who may otherwise not have been able to afford a expensive third party sale.
“The internet isn’t always a super honest place,” Strasburg said. “This is not unique to the Mission. It is not unique to Colorado. It is not unique to the United States,” Strasburg said.
While purchasing tickets for the purpose of raising the price and reselling is not illegal in Colorado, Strasburg said at times it can push out some customers from being able to attend their favorite show at an affordable price.
AEG Presents created a reservation program for tickets so locals could guarantee their entrance at an affordable rate. However, Strasburg said the program was so successful that the tickets which were not reserved were sold at an even higher rate by scalpers as a result of supply and demand.
Strasburg said the venue recently swept 10 percent of the tickets from a recent show and returned them to genuine buyers. He said by doing so, he hoped more Colorado residents can experience their favorite bands in one of the nicest modern venues in the nation.
“The customer’s our number one responsibility,” Strasburg said. “Denver is an amazing music community. That is one of the methods we can use to combat this.”