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Ticketmaster Starts Blocking Some Suspected Bot Users

NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Ticketmaster appears to be cracking down on the use of "bots" by blocking dozens if not hundreds of ticket brokers from accessing Ticketmaster's websites.

According to a story on Ticketnews, possibly hundreds of secondary market ticket brokers who heavily access Ticketmaster's website have been blocked from accessing the site, likely for activity that Ticketmaster appears to consider as indicative of bot-use.

Bots are software programs that automate the purchasing of tickets that brokers can then resell on secondary market sites, hopefully at an inflated price. While there are no firm estimates on just how many brokers use bots, at least a portion of brokers use such software, which is illegal in some states and first came to public attention during the Hannah Montana ticketing flap during her 2007-2008 tour.

Ticketmaster has long held that they have sophisticated software systems designed to circumvent such bots, but the heavy-handed blocking of IP addresses in this latest move casts doubts on the efficacy of such systems.

Additionally, numerous brokers who report having been blocked also claim that they do not employ any bots to purchase tickets.

The Ticketnews article also notes that these blocks may actually hit Ticketmaster where it hurts — on the bottom line. Ticketmaster owns secondary ticket website Ticketsnow which many of the blocked brokers do business through.

Ticketmaster did not respond to requests for comment on the matter. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers