Tickets, please (and your credit card, and a photo ID)

Jun 17, 2012

State lawmakers are looking at ways to make it easier to get tickets to popular concerts, plays and sporting events.

The legislation applies to the small, but growing number of paperless tickets sold in the United States.

"Paperless tickets" are bought over the internet, and often require the person picking up the tickets to show the same credit card and a photo ID.

Ticket sellers, like Ticketmaster, say they require photo ID for paperless tickets as a way to prevent scalping and counterfeit or stolen tickets.

Critics say the practice is less about security and more about stifling competition from independent resellers.

Linda Teeter is the executive director of Michigan Citizen Action. She recalls watching a mother buy concert tickets for her teenage son, only to realize later she would have to go too, since the tickets were bought with her credit card.

“I got to tell you the mom standing there…who had just bought six tickets for these teenagers,” Teeter said, laughing as she recalled the scene, “and then the teenager realizing that the mom had to go along.”

Recently, a bill was introduced in the Michigan state Senate that would allow one person to buy tickets and allow another person to use them.