Lin-Manuel Miranda Teams With Schumer On Nationwide Anti-Ticket Bot Bill
August 17, 2016
As published on CBS New York on August 14, 2016.
“Hamilton” creator Lin-Manuel Miranda is teaming up with Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., in a push to make automated ticket bots illegal nationwide.
Schumer is pushing for legislation to impose a $16,000 fine on those who use automated ticket purchasing software to purchase tickets online, 1010 WINS’ Roger Stern reported.
“If the starting price for a ticket to ‘Hamilton’ is $189, but the bots have been selling them from anywhere from $600 to $2,000 a ticket — just think how much money the people make,” Schumer said.
Miranda joined Schumer to speak on the initiative on Sunday.
“My concern is that our show is about the founding of our country, and if bots are buying up all the tickets and charging this insane secondary market price, most of the country can’t see it,” Miranda said.
Miranda said that growing up, seeing a Broadway show was a special occasion, but at least it was one that was affordable.
“The bot software that’s used right now basically makes the price range — even a special event price range — out of the range for most Americans,” Miranda said.
CBS2’s Brian Conybeare reported tickets for this Friday’s show with a face value of $189 are going for as much as $2,184 on StubHub — a mark-up of more than 1,000 percent.
Schumer said the new law would stop that.
“Every time a bot should buy up a ticket and then sell it: a $16,000 fine. That will put them out of business,” Schumer said.
Theatergoers looking for tickets say it’s way too expensive now.
“I’ll wait. Hamilton’s been dead for over 200 years, what’s the rush?” one person said.
An earlier investigation by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman found that third-party brokers resell tickets on sites like StubHub and TicketsNow at average margins of 49 percent above face-value and sometimes more than 10 times the price.
Using automated ticket buying software is already criminalized in New York State.
“Hamilton” tickets are sold out through next February.