Feb 19, 2024 2 min read

Anti-touting campaign hails EU Digital Services Act going into effect as "a landmark moment" for the live sector

Secondary ticketing platforms in the EU now have to comply with new regulations set out in the Digital Services Act, which began applying to all online intermediates on Saturday. Anti-touting campaign group FEAT says this is a “landmark moment” in the fight against for-profit ticket resale

Anti-touting campaign hails EU Digital Services Act going into effect as "a landmark moment" for the live sector

The European Union's Digital Services Act went fully into force this weekend, constituting "a landmark moment for Europe’s live events sector", according to FEAT, the pan-European campaign against for-profit ticket touting. That's because new rules in the DSA will apply to online ticket resale platforms like StubHub and Viagogo. 

"The new regulation, designed to create a safer digital environment, includes key provisions lobbied for over two years by FEAT on behalf of Europe’s live entertainment sector", the campaign group said on Friday.

After being passed in October 2022, the DSA began applying last year to nineteen specifically identified 'very large online platforms'. As of Saturday the regulations now apply to all online intermediaries operating in the EU.

“This is a landmark moment for Europe’s live events sector", said FEAT director Sam Shemtob. "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 Digital Services Coordinators 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". 

The EU itself has pledged to work hard to ensure compliance with the new regulations and urged member states to do likewise. Commissioner For Internal Market Thierry Breton said, "We are fully mobilised to ensure full implementation of the DSA and we encourage all member states to make the most out of our new rulebook. Effective enforcement is key to protect our citizens from illegal content and to uphold their rights".

According to FEAT, new rules of relevance to the secondary ticketing market include an obligation on platforms to identify and verify professional sellers. "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", it explains. "They will also be required to ensure that the seller’s name, contact and trading details appear on the listing".

Platforms will also be "banned from using design tricks that manipulate consumers into decisions", will have to "make it clear throughout the buying process that the tickets listed are provided by a third party", and will need to "produce easily comprehensible and publicly-available annual reports on takedowns of ticket listings".

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