EU Online Ticket Resellers Regulation Comes Into Force

The EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA) has entered into force for all online platforms, with major implications for online ticket resale.

The new regulation, designed to create a safer digital environment, includes key provisions lobbied for over two years  by the Face-value European Alliance for Ticketing (FEAT) on behalf of Europe’s live entertainment sector. FEAT, is a non-profit organisation, formed in 2019, to promote better ticket resale practices across Europe. FEAT’s members are leading live event professionals across concert touring, festivals, comedy and sport from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland,  the Netherlands, Spain, as well as EEA members Norway and Switzerland.

Online marketplaces will now be subject to stricter due diligence and reporting requirements, improving transparency for buyers, and e-commerce tricks to encourage panic buying will be outlawed.

Online marketplaces will be required to obtain essential information about third party professional sellers, such as name, contact details and ID, before traders can list tickets on the platform. They will also be required to ensure that the seller’s name contact and trading details appear on the listing.

Ticket resale sites will be banned from using design tricks that manipulate consumers into decisions, such as “pop-ups” or giving prominence to specific choices.

Online resellers ​​will be required to produce easily comprehensible and publicly-available annual reports on takedowns of ticket listings.This will give an indication of the scale of harmful activity taking place.

Resale platforms will be required to make it clear throughout the buying process that the tickets listed are provided by a third party. If a platform fails to do this and fans are led to believe that the tickets are provided by the platform itself, the platform can be held responsible for any tickets listed in contravention of national laws.

Every Member State is in the process of appointing a Digital Services Coordinator (DSC) to enforce the rules laid out in the DSA, with far-reaching powers of investigation. DSCs will have the ability to sanction platforms that do not comply with these new  regulations, and consumers will be able to notify DSCs of any illegal listings through a simple flagging procedure.

FEAT is now engaged in working with Member States’ newly-appointed Digital Services Coordinators to ensure effective enforcement of the DSA. This includes establishing a clear process for reporting and taking down ticket listings that contradict Member State or EU law.

FEAT Director Sam Shemtob said: “This is a landmark moment for Europe’s live events sector. Our priority now is to ensure that the new rules are enforced, with a clear process for removing illegal ticket listings as and when they appear. FEAT is looking forward to working with DSCs across the

Member States to make this happen and lay the groundwork for a fairer, more transparent ticket-buying experience for consumers on the secondary market.”