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Protection for buying tickets online

Published (4/25/2008)
By Craig Green
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The so-called “Hannah Montana” bill is closer to becoming law.

Sponsored by Rep. Joe Atkins (DFL-Inver Grove Heights) and Sen. Ron Latz (DFL-St. Louis Park), HF2911/SF3139* would make it a gross misdemeanor to sell, distribute or use software to get around security and move to the front of an Internet ticket buyer line.

That’s what happened last summer with the Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana “Best of Both Worlds” tour, when parents went online to get tickets only to find that the concerts were already sold out. Tickets were subsequently resold for as much as 10 times the original price.

Approved as amended by the House 119-12 April 21 and re-approved by the Senate 63-0 April 23, it now awaits action by the governor.

When the Hannah Montana tickets went on sale, some using the ticket buying software bought all the tickets within a matter of seconds, leaving everyone else to buy tickets at inflated prices. “That is wrong. That is the 21st century version of bullying,” Atkins said. “We wouldn’t allow it at the bus stop or on the playground, and we ought not to allow it on the Internet.”

The bill would not affect last year’s law that repealed Minnesota ticket scalping statutes.

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