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Letters to the Editor

Stop ticket scammers

| Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017, 8:55 p.m.

In August, U.S. Rep. Tom Marino, R-Williamsport, encouraged the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to review the practice of “white label” ticket reselling. These programs use deceptive URLs and imagery, as well as aggressive search-engine advertising, to prey on consumers, often leading them to overpay for seats for concerts and sporting events. The sites exist exclusively to rip consumers off.

Almost anyone who has ever bought an event ticket has come across it. Companies call them “white label” sites. But let's be honest. They are scam sites.

The FTC took action on this issue three years ago. Under the terms of the $1.4 million settlement between the FTC and TicketNetwork, the company was banned from using a venue, artist or sports team's name in its URL, or imagery of the venue or performer, and mandated to disclose its identity. Even a cursory search finds violations of this agreement. The FTC cannot ignore this.

These sites prey on less tech-savvy consumers. They represent the very worst in unfair trade practices. I implore the FTC to take the issue seriously and to protect the rights of concertgoers and sports fans across America.

Steve DelBianco

Washington, D.C.

The writer is executive director of NetChoice, a trade association of e-commerce businesses and online consumers (

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