PROMOTERS AND agents organisation BDKV (the Federal Association of Concert and Event Management) is celebrating a landmark victory against the secondary ticketing sector, after a court ruled that primary ticketing terms and conditions (T&Cs) had a legal foundation.
BDKV had created a clause, which was adopted by the majority of major ticket agencies such as CTS Eventim in their online and printed T&Cs, saying that tickets could not be resold at more than a mark-up of 25 per cent to reflect processing costs.
The association took legal action again Netherlands-based Ticketbande, which has a website focused on the German market and whose owner lives in Germany, claiming breach of T&Cs relating to ticket resale.
On 28 February, the Civil Senate of the Celle Higher Regional Court confirmed the first instance ruling by the Hanover Regional Court, ruled that Ticketbande must refrain from selling tickets on its website for a price higher than face value plus a maximum of 25 per cent ancillary costs.
This is the first time the resale prohibition cause has been reviewed in an appeals court and the first time that a ruling has been made between the permitted private and commercial resale of tickets.
Consequently, the victory means that event organisers can now issue cease-and-desist orders to ticket resellers attempting to trade at inflated prices.
“The resale ban clause we developed is new legal territory,” says BDKV’s Dr Johannes Ulbricht. “The ruling gives organisers clarity for the first time that, contrary to the claims of secondary market traders, the clause is valid and provides the organisers with a basis to successfully counteract the usury business of secondary market retailers.
“It is a long road to achieving legal regulation of the secondary ticket market, but through this judgement, we have made a decisive step in this direction.”