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NC Attorney General Joins 29 Other States In Live Nation Lawsuit, Alleging Illegal Monopoly

Source: CBS 17

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein has joined a lawsuit accusing Live Nation Entertainment and Ticketmaster of illegally monopolizing the live entertainment industry, particularly ticketing services for concerts.

According to last week’s filing, Live Nation Entertainment currently owns and operates over 250 concert venues across the U.S., and controls around 60 percent of concert promotions at major concert venues across the country. 

“Live Nation is using its monopoly power to force North Carolinians to pay more than they should for tickets to live events,” Attorney General Josh Stein said in a statement. “Tickets to shows are already expensive enough. I will not allow any company to use its monopoly power to charge people even more. That’s why I am bringing today’s action.”

In the lawsuit, filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, the U.S. Department of Justice and 30 states allege that Live Nation has:

  • Harmed fans through higher fees and by limiting the amount of information fans have regarding the ultimate cost to see a show. Fans’ ticketing experience — from buying a ticket to showtime — is also worse than it would be if the industry was competitive.
  • Maintained its monopoly in ticketing markets by locking up venues through restrictive long-term, exclusive agreements and threats that venues would lose access to Live Nation-controlled tours and artists if they sign with a rival ticketer.
  • Leveraged its extensive network of venues to force artists to select Live Nation as a promoter instead of its rivals, maintaining its promotions monopoly.

In the suit, the Department of Justice and the states asserted: “With this vast scope of power comes influence. Live Nation and its wholly owned subsidiary, Ticketmaster, have used that power and influence to insert themselves at the center and the edges of virtually every aspect of the live music ecosystem.”

The lawsuit asks the court to restore competition in the live entertainment industry by prohibiting Live Nation from engaging in its anticompetitive practices and, ordering Live Nation to divest Ticketmaster.Attorney General Stein launched his investigation into Ticketmaster back in November 2022, following the chaos over Taylor Swift tickets.

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