They're the reason you were shut out of Tragically Hip tickets, and that just doesn't sit well with Attorney General Yasir Naqvi. Now, the province of Ontario wants to do something to stop the software — so called "scalper bots" — employed by resellers to buy up large blocks of tickets before regular consumers get the opportunity.
It won't be easy; there's no cure-all to stop criminals using a range of programs and technologies to make bulk ticket purchases, but inaction isn't the answer either, Naqvi says. The government must intervene to try and protect consumers.
He was admittedly "bugged" when Tragically Hip fans were blocked from pre-sale tickets for the band's farewell tour (an issue that went all the way up to the Prime Minister), so Naqvi is consulting with consumer groups, entertainers, and colleagues in other big markets like New York and London, which have also struggle with such bots, for a solution. The legislation, to be introduced next spring, will build on a private member's bill by Liberal Sophie Kiwala also intended to outlaw "scalper bots."
This comes on the same day that the UK government considers an amendment to the digital economy bill that wants "ticket touts" who use bots to face special punishment. The amendment tabled by Conservative MP Nigel Adams proposes prison and a £5,000 fine for violators.
Adams was inspired, he says, because he missed out on Green Day tickets. You mustn't come between a politician and their dad rock.