Published Feb 28, 2017The Tragically Hip's historic hometown show in Kingston last summer shone a spotlight on one of Canada's most beloved talents — and the country's huge problem with ticket bots and scalpers.
Ontario is now taking steps to give fans a better shot at scooping up first-hand tickets. Speaking at the Ed Mirvish Theatre in Toronto this morning (February 28), Ontario Attorney General Yasir Naqvi affirmed the province's ongoing fight against ticket gouging and announced the launch of a new survey.
The public consultation is open until March 15, and Ontarians can head over here to fill it out and share their experiences and priorities with their representatives. It takes approximately 10 minutes to fill out, and the government's findings will be shared in a report later this spring.
"Ontario is home some of the best artists, performers and athletes in the world," Naqvi said [via CBC]. "From the Hip to Drake and Bieber to the Jays, the Raptors, and of course, the Sens, I'm from Ottawa, to great performances like Come From Away, The Book of Mormon and The Bodyguard, we have a lot to be proud of. But we also have a real problem when it comes to fans getting a fair shot at buying tickets."
He added, "Fans deserve a fair shot at getting tickets to seeing their favourite band, sports team, or performance, but right now, the rules around buying and selling tickets online are not doing enough for fans. They are not putting them first. Our government is going to change that."
This follows a private member's bill to ban ticket bots from Kingston and the Islands liberal MPP Sophie Kiwala last year. Known officially as Bill 22: The Ticket Speculation Amendment Act, Kiwala's bill is seeking to prohibit the use of software that skips over security measures on resale sites, and would make it mandatory for face value of tickets to appear on resale sites. So far, it has passed second reading in the Ontario Legislature.
Manitoba, meanwhile, has already outlawed reselling tickets for profit, busting Hip ticket scalpers in the midst of the band's tour last summer.