Senate Takes Aim At ‘Bots’ That Snap Up Concert Seats

The Senate is cracking down on computer software used by ticket brokers to snap up tickets to concerts and shows.

Senators passed legislation by voice vote Wednesday that would make using the software an “unfair and deceptive practice” under the Federal Trade Commission Act and allow the FTC to pursue those cases. The House passed similar legislation in September, but the bills are not identical so the Senate legislation now moves to the House.

The so-called “bots” rapidly purchase as many tickets as possible for resale at significant markups. They are one of the reasons why tickets to a Bruce Springsteen concert or “Hamilton” performance can sell out in just a few minutes.

Photo: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
The cast of "Hamilton" perform at the Tony Awards at the Beacon Theatre in New York. 

Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran sponsored the bill. He says it takes aim at artificially inflated prices.