It’s a story that’s been told numerous times.
Parent makes repeated attempts to secure Hannah Montana concert tickets for their child, only to discover those efforts are for naught. The show’s sold out, and unless that parent is willing to drop buckets of cash for seats on the secondary market, nothing else can be done.
But for Kerry Inman and fan club members who faced similar challenges during the teen pop star’s onsale, there was something to be done – take legal action.
Two law firms have filed a class action suit in Tennessee District Court on behalf of Inman and "anyone else who signed up for the official Miley Cyrus fan club at MileyWorld.com based on the club’s representation that joining would make it easier to get Hannah Montana concert tickets."
Attorney Robert Peirce said in a statement that the site’s owners and operators, Interactive Media Marketing and Smiley Miley Inc., "deceptively lured thousands of individuals into purchasing memberships into the Miley Cyrus fan club, and that’s why we’re suing."
Although MileyWorld.com didn’t offer ticket guarantees, the number of club members who were actually able to obtain seats for the concerts was apparently too low for the liking of some.
While it is unclear exactly how many tickets were allotted for MileyWorld fan club members, Debra Rathwell, Sr. VP of AEG Live, previously told Pollstar that about half of the tickets go to the fan club Web site and the other half go on sale to the public.
"While the club and Web site do not guarantee ticket availability, they explicitly state that members who log on shortly after tickets become available will have a good opportunity to get tickets," Peirce said. "In reality, the vast majority of club members, including those who logged on at the appointed time or shortly thereafter, were unable to obtain concert tickets."
Inman was one of those members. After paying the $29.95 membership fee and logging onto the site at the exact time of the onsale, she was reportedly informed that all of the available tickets had been sold.
"The scenario that the Inman family went through – paying for a membership, then logging on to purchase tickets as soon as possible – this scenario has been replayed thousands, if not tens of thousands of times over the past few months," Peirce said.
The suit alleges that the Interactive Media and Smiley Miley engaged in deception, negligent misrepresentation and violated the state’s Consumer Protection Act in their operation of the club.
Inman and class members are seeking class action certification, actual, punitive and treble damages, plus the costs of the suit and attorneys’ fees.
Cyrus spokeswoman Meghan Prophet countered in a statement that the suit makes bogus claims, and that the fan club plans to "vigorously defend itself."
"Among the many benefits of membership, MileyWorld members had an opportunity to purchase presale tickets to the ‘Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds’ concert tour and more than 70,000 MileyWorld members obtained concert tickets as a result of their membership in MileyWorld," Prophet said.
"The MileyWorld website expressly states that MileyWorld does not guarantee every member a concert ticket. MileyWorld members had far greater access to concert tickets than the general public and other fan clubs and the claim that the vast majority of MileyWorld members were unable to obtain concert tickets is simply false."