Live Nation to Reportedly Face Antitrust Lawsuit from US Department of Justice

Federal regulators will reportedly sue the concert giant over claims of abusing its market dominance to undermine the competition

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Apr 16, 2024

A new report from The Wall Street Journal reveals that the US Department of Justice (DOJ) is planning on suing concert giant Live Nation over alleged violation of federal antitrust laws.

Within weeks, a lawsuit is expected to be filed, alleging that the mega-corporation has leveraged its market dominance in the live music industry to undermine competition in the ticketing sector. Few other details about the filing have been shared.

Since Live Nation and Ticketmaster merged in 2010, the company has faced criticism for exerting an unfair level of supremacy in the business of live entertainment. The DOJ approved the merger at the time, but instated a so-called consent decree — originally set to expire in 2020 but later extended by five years after repeated accusations of violation — formulated to prevent the company from abusing its powerful position.

In November 2022, outcry against the corporation reached a fever pitch with its botched handling of the first sales for Taylor Swift's Eras Tour. (If you need a refresher, Ticketmaster crashed as millions of fans tried [and most failed] to buy presale tickets, and many who signed up didn't even receive codes.) Days afterward, the news broke that the DOJ had already been investigating the entertainment conglomerate over potential antitrust violations.

In the months to follow, the US Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) launched an inquiry over Live Nation's business practices, which resulted in last November's subpoena for documents on Ticketmaster pricing and service fees. After a visit to the White House last summer, both Ticketmaster and competitor SeatGeek promised more transparency about service fees.

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