SPORTENG are experts in the planning, design and construction inspection of sport Fields of Playread more
Concert promoter Michael Chugg says Viagogo is ‘out of control ... f**king thieves’
South Australian consumers are being urged not to use online ticket reseller Viagogo, with Veteran promoter Michael Chugg labelling the company “outrageously out of control”.
However, in a weekend report in Adelaide newspaper the Sunday Mail, the Switzerland-based reseller has hit back at the criticisms, saying that promoters around the world are acting illegally in not honouring Viagogo tickets.
As reported by the Sunday Mail, Viagogo claims to be just a marketplace where people can sell unwanted tickets to music and sporting events.
However, its many critics, including government consumer protection agency, cite numerous examples of false claims by Viagogo about the number of tickets available for events, the same ticket be resold multiple times, giving the impression it is an official ticket for events when it is not, and making false representations about its money-back guarantee.
As of last week, New Zealand’s Commerce Commission described Viagogo as a "marketplace for scalpers and fraudsters" in a submission backing an attempt to seek an injunction in the Auckland High Court.
The Sunday Mail report advised that in the past week in Adelaide several fans were refused entry to a concert by former Supertramp frontman Roger Hodgson after purchasing invalid tickets through Viagogo.
Chugg, whose Chugg Entertainment promotions company is currently organising Elton John’s Australian leg of his farewell tour, stated “they’re outrageously out of control - they’re f***ing thieves, basically.
“Last week when we announced Elton John they put a poster on Facebook, illegally using the Elton John artwork, advertising tickets as though they were the official ticket agent.”
Chugg said governments around the world had tried to prevent Viagogo from operating in their countries, with varying degrees of success, adding “when you are touring a monstrously popular act you’re going to pick up a percentage of people who probably haven’t been to show in 10 or 20 years.
“They’re not aware of how they should book their tickets, so they go on to the search engine and the first thing that comes up is Viagogo and they blindly go on there and buy tickets without reading the fine print. Then they find out that they’re not going to get their tickets until five days before the show and half the time they’re in somebody else’s name, and they get to the venue and they can’t get in. As promoters, we get very upset.”
Chugg said that people should always go through official ticket sellers such as Ticketek or Ticketmaster and avoid Viagogo at all costs.
Adelaide Entertainment Centre (AEC) General Manager Phil King, agreed, telling the Sunday Mail “Viagogo spends a lot of money from a search engine perspective to ensure they’re the top of search results.
“They’re very devious, and use words like ‘official’ to make people think they’re in the right place. They also claim that there aren’t many tickets left to create a sense of urgency.”
King said the AEC and other venues had done a good job educating fans to not deal with the company, but that there were always those who missed the message.
He added “it’s basically modern-day scalping, shifted to a 21st century mode.
“I have a real dislike for them.”
In a statement responding to the Sunday Mail, Viagogo’s press office advised “event organisers sometimes make claims that they will deny entry to people who have purchased resold tickets. These types of entry restrictions are highly unfair and in our view, unenforceable and illegal. Therefore, as with all tickets on our platform, Viagogo customers should feel confident that they will gain entry to the event, and that is why we back every ticket with the Viagogo guarantee.
“If a customer has any problems with their tickets, we urge them to contact us immediately on our event day hotline. We are often able to find replacement tickets right away, and in the rare instances we are not able to, customers receive a full refund.”
13th December 2018 - Western Australian Government introduces legislation to combat ticket scalping
26th October 2018 - South Australian Government introduces new ticket scalping legislation
12th September 2018 - Viagogo responds to calls for Google AdWords service to reject its resales
5th June 2018 - FIFA makes criminal complaint against ticket reseller Viagogo
8th February 2018 - Google to demand ticket resale site transparency
17th November 2017 - Australian Government begins ticket scalping consultation
16th October 2016 - Michael Chugg named International Entertainment Buyer of the Year
15th March 2016 - Phil King named Director of Live Entertainment at ICC Sydney
15th March 2014 - Michael Chugg celebrates 50 years as an entertainment promoter
12th February 2009 - Michael Chugg named International Promoter of the Year
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
Vticket Pty Ltd is the Australian and New Zealand distributor for Gateway Ticketing Systems Inc., the world leader in high-speed access control, admission control and ticketing software for the…read more
ICP is an Australian-based company focused on indoor climbing. ICP will manage your project from initial design to completion and beyond, whether you're building an international-level climbing…read more
SLE Worldwide Australia is a Managing General Underwriter specialising in insuring risks in the world of Sports, Leisure and Entertainment. Be it relaxing, playing, organising or watching sports,…read more
iDwala is the Community Sports Surface Specialist offering the highest quality designs and technical expertise to Councils, Schools and Sporting Clubs looking to create sporting…read more
As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…read more
Gladstone Health & Leisure (Gladstone MRM Pty Ltd Australia) is a leading supplier of leisure management and fitness software and is endorsed by leading health and fitness professionals and…read more
METRA Australia is your innovation partner for smart electronic locking, Access Control solutions and cashless payment systems to suit all types of leisure facilities. Our team’s…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!