(NewsNation) — More than two dozen Taylor Swift fans have filed a lawsuit against Ticketmaster parent company Live Nation, alleging violations of antitrust laws weeks after a chaotic sale for an upcoming Swift tour left thousands of fans dissatisfied.
The lawsuit, filed Friday in California, also alleges Ticketmaster profits off the resale of tickets in the secondary market by adding a service fee. Echoing the same grievances from other legal complaints, the lawsuit argues Ticketmaster and Live Nation are anti-competitive and force fans to use their site exclusively.
“This is not the first time that that Ticketmaster Live Nation has been litigating,” said Joshua Grabuart, an entertainment lawyer with Romano Law. “I mean, this is currently being litigated since really this year, just not connected to Taylor Swift tickets, but connected to tickets generally.”
Ticketmaster said 3.5 million people registered through its verified fan system weeks in advance to get first dibs on buying concert tickets for Swift’s upcoming Eras Tour. The company said it only planned to allow 1.5 million people to buy tickets online and sell the rest to the general public.
The presale was supposed to be available only to people with a specific code, but Ticketmaster said last month bots and others without a code logged on anyway.
Now tickets are being resold for out-of-control prices, and Ticketmaster has canceled the general public sale. The company cited the extraordinarily high demand and insufficient remaining ticket inventory to meet that demand.
“Hundreds of thousands of people waited from four to eight hours and never got an opportunity to buy tickets, so they just want the system to change,” Jennifer Kinder, a lawyer representing the fans, told The New York Times.
The Justice Department’s antitrust division has been investigating Live Nation, and Tennessee’s attorney general says he plans to look into whether Ticketmaster violated consumers rights and antitrust laws.