Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Judge Makes Key Ruling In Ticketmaster Suit

October 15, 2007

By Ray Waddell, Nashville

A federal judge in Los Angeles issued a preliminary injunction against RMG Technologies to stop creating, trafficking in, or facilitating the use of computer programs that allow its clients to circumvent the protection systems on the ticketmaster.com Web site.

The injunction is temporary and forces RMG to stop activity until there is a full trial, at which point a permanent injunction may or may not be issued depending on the evidence.

The order issued today by Judge Audrey B. Collins also bars RMG, of Pittsburgh, Pa., from using information gained from access of Ticketmaster's Web site to create computer programs designed to circumvent the company's copy protection and Web site regulation systems.


Ticketmaster says these programs have allowed ticket brokers to have unfair and repeated access to tickets. According to Ticketmaster, RMG's clients are ticket brokers or suppliers to ticket brokers who use RMG's software to buy tickets they can resell to the public at higher prices. The issue has come under increased scrutiny this fall in the wake of the huge demand for tickets to to the Hannah Montana tour, which starts Friday.

"Ticketmaster is committed to ensuring that consumers have fair and equitable access to tickets," says Ticketmaster CEO Sean Moriarty in a statement following the ruling. "We will not allow others to illegally divert tickets away from fans. We recognize and respect the necessity and reality of a vibrant resale market, but we will not tolerate those who seek an unfair advantage through the use of automated programs."