TM & StubHub Settle And Seal

Ticketmaster’s attorney filed a motion to dismiss the company’s nearly 2-year-old suit against StubHub Dec. 2, but apparently that’s not the last bit of business related to the contract interference case.

Two weeks earlier, Ticketmaster filed a separate motion to seal recent depositions given by CEO Sean Moriarty and former executive VP David Goldberg. The judge will hear that motion in January, according to court documents.

Terms of the settlement were not made public and likely will remain confidential as is typical practice in civil lawsuits.

Ticketmaster filed the suit in April 2007 against StubHub and parent company eBay, claiming interference with contractual relations and prospective economic relations, unjust enrichment and constructive trust.

Specifically, the suit claimed StubHub obtained tickets for the 2007 “Rowdy Frynds” tour with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hank Williams Jr. and 38 Special by “inducing Ticketmaster’s venue clients to deliver premium tickets to StubHub.”

The motion to seal depositions by Moriarty and Goldberg appears to be based on previous agreements made by TM and StubHub regarding what information could be withheld from the public record.

“First, each of the documents Ticketmaster seeks to file under seal contain information subject to protective orders entered in the matter,” a memorandum to the motion filed by attorney Douglas Fuchs said.

“The excerpts of the deposition testimony of … Moriarty has been designated by Ticketmaster as ‘Highly Confidential – Outside Attorneys’ Eyes Only,’ and the excerpts of the deposition testimony of … Goldberg has been designated ‘Highly confidential – Attorneys’ Eyes Only,’ pursuant to the joint stipulations and protective orders entered by this Court Dec. 6, 2007 and Feb. 13, 2008.”

According to court documents, “The protective orders ‘constitute an overriding interest’ sufficient to overcome the right of public access to the record and justify the filing of the documents under seal.”

The motion to seal depositions sheds very little light on the testimony of the two execs, but suggests a discussion of proprietary business practices as well as TM’s acquisition of Front Line Management, which resulted in Irving Azoff’s ascension as CEO of the renamed Ticketmaster Entertainment.

“…There is substantial probability that Ticketmaster will be prejudiced if the confidential Testimony is not sealed because the deposition excerpts at issue contain discussions of highly sensitive confidential in business information of Ticketmaster including, but not limited to, Ticketmaster’s overarching business strategy and its reasons for acquiring interests in Front Line Management and SLO Limited, Inc., as well as confidential discussions had during the acquisition negotiations with representatives from those entities,” the memorandum continued.

The case was scheduled for trial beginning Jan. 20.