Ticketing Legislation Update – Ontario and Alberta
Bill 166 – The Ticket Sales Act was passed on December 13. Over the past year, Music Canada Live has engaged with Office of the Attorney General, expressing, through meetings, written recommendations and an appearance before Queen’s Park Social Policy committee, support for (as examples) the banning of ticket “bots” and private right of action, but had concerns regarding other proposed requirements, specifically:
- Price caps
- Inventory disclosure
We are pleased that the government removed the inventory disclosure element of the proposal thanks to effective and consistent efforts from industry and Music Canada Live. Press coverage by the Globe and Mail included an article on November 21, 2017 and Executive Director Erin Benjamin is quoted in their November 24, 2017 article.
Our statement on the passage of the Bill can be found here. The passage of the Bill garnered significant media attention, with Erin Benjamin quoted by the CBC, Celebrity Access and the Kingston-Whig Standard. Erin also appeared on CTV, Charles Adler Tonight (Corus Radio), The Larry Fedoruk Show and CBC’s Here and Now.
Fair Trading Act – Alberta
On November 29, 2017, the Government of Alberta proposed the Consumer Protection Act (formerly the Fair Trading Act), which introduced ticket buying provisions including:
- Banning ticket bots
- Requiring re-sellers to offer full refunds for tickets that are cancelled, counterfeit or purchased by bots.
Music Canada Live met with key decision makers to reiterate our support of the elimination of “bots” and to express our concerns about imposing price caps and inventory disclosure requirements. We are pleased to report that the legislation integrated Music Canada Live’s recommendations. Next steps in Alberta will include further consultation to ensure regulations within the bill can be fully effective.
Music Canada Live is pleased to be an effective and strong advocate for its members:
- Both provinces are now aware of what the live music industry feels is key with regard to legislation that truly protects consumers.
- Music Canada Live’s ability to effect change underscores our importance as the trusted voice of live music in Canada, ensuring that our members’ interests are acknowledged and protected.
British Columbia is also reviewing its current ticketing legislation and we are in conversation with the Province. Ultimately we believe that consumer education and awareness are key, and will continue to work with governments to deepen efforts to protect fans from fraudulent ticketing activity.