Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale tickets?

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moonwatcher
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Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale tickets?

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 17, 2012 2:55 pm

If you do not already have your ticket(s), it is very possible that you will be looking at the re-sale market for your ticket.
There is the August 3rd sale of the last 1000 tickets, but that will be a gamble. You may be able to get through, but maybe not. And that is assuming the servers don't crash, as they always seem to do.

Let's begin right out by saying that, under no circumstances, should you deal with scalpers. People offering multiples tickets at wildly inflated prices are off-limits. OK?

But say you see someone offering a ticket on Craiglist or eBay at $500 or $600...is that too much?
Considering that this person probably paid somewhere around $420 for the ticket ($390+fees), and considering that Paypal and/or eBay will impose fairly substantial service fees also, is $500 really a violation of Burner principles? Or are you making that person come out about even?

What is an "ethical ticket" in the re-sale world?
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby trilobyte » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:02 pm

Anybody selling over face value plus perhaps the cost of shipping and fees is scalping. Ebay and stubhub charge 9-10% in service fees, your choice on whether you'd want to do business with a seller there. Burners can list their tickets here with no fees, and most likely find other outlets to list them at no cost as well (there are probably a dozen facebook groups or pages, for a start).

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby Tanzremix » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:02 pm

Anything over $500 is a hard pill to swallow. I can see going up to $500: people paid out $250-440 (depending on tier) for tickets six months ago. That isn't an insignificant amount for a lot of people, the opportunity cost there is high. Maybe reimbursing them for their opportunity cost isn't what would happen in an ideal world, but I can handle it.

We wouldn't need to worry about scalpers if the system was run properly from the get-go, and it seems like things have only gotten more confused as time has rolled on (how man STEPpers are there? Apparently more than there should be) so we're just going to have to deal with it.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby trilobyte » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:06 pm

There's no system in the world that could guarantee 120K tickets to hopeful customers when the available supply was 40K.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby Tanzremix » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:08 pm

trilobyte wrote:There's no system in the world that could guarantee 120K tickets to hopeful customers when the available supply was 40K.


Transparency is our friend. If demand was really 2.5x the amount of tickets available aftermarket prices would be 2.5x face, which they are not.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:11 pm

trilobyte wrote:Anybody selling over face value plus perhaps the cost of shipping and fees is scalping. Ebay and stubhub charge 9-10% in service fees, your choice on whether you'd want to do business with a seller there. Burners can list their tickets here with no fees, and most likely find other outlets to list them at no cost as well (there are probably a dozen facebook groups or pages, for a start).


Do the math, Trilo.
If the person paid $420 for the ticket, and she gets $500, minus 10% in service fees = $450. A whopping $30 in "profit". Hardly scalping, in my humble opinion.

(edited the math, for clarity)
Last edited by moonwatcher on Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:18 pm

trilobyte wrote:There's no system in the world that could guarantee 120K tickets to hopeful customers when the available supply was 40K.


There never were 120K hopeful customers. 120K registrations, yes. But it is not a secret that many people registered more than once; some, several times. My evidence is not just anecdotal. I have talked to burner groups where multiple registrations was the rule. One person even told me that she read on eplaya that it could be done (I have no way to tell if this is true or just a rationalization/justification on her part).
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby A Jester » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:20 pm

moonwatcher wrote:
trilobyte wrote:Anybody selling over face value plus perhaps the cost of shipping and fees is scalping. Ebay and stubhub charge 9-10% in service fees, your choice on whether you'd want to do business with a seller there. Burners can list their tickets here with no fees, and most likely find other outlets to list them at no cost as well (there are probably a dozen facebook groups or pages, for a start).


Do the math, Trilo.
If the person paid $420 for the ticket, +10% in service fees = $462. On $500, less than $40 in "profit". Hardly scalping, in my humble opinion.


I'd say that charging $40 extra is absolutely scalping. $40 is hardly worth breaking a principle, but that's a different story.

Tanzremix wrote:
trilobyte wrote:There's no system in the world that could guarantee 120K tickets to hopeful customers when the available supply was 40K.


Transparency is our friend. If demand was really 2.5x the amount of tickets available aftermarket prices would be 2.5x face, which they are not.


Is that an actual Economic Behavioral theory, or did you just make that up? (Not trolling, actually wondering)
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby Tanzremix » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:23 pm

A Jester wrote:
moonwatcher wrote:
trilobyte wrote:
Is that an actual Economic Behavioral theory, or did you just make that up? (Not trolling, actually wondering)


No, it wouldn't be exactly 2.5x because quite a few people would be priced out of the market, so I did sort of pull it out of my ass. Plus, with what we know (jack shit apparently, and less every day) it'd be impossible to model. However, if demand was that extreme you can bet prices would be a lot higher than they are now (50-60% above face).

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby moonwatcher » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:34 pm

A Jester wrote:
moonwatcher wrote:
Do the math, Trilo.
If the person paid $420 for the ticket, and she gets $500, minus 10% in service fees = $450. A whopping $30 in "profit". Hardly scalping, in my humble opinion.


I'd say that charging $40 extra is absolutely scalping. $40 is hardly worth breaking a principle, but that's a different story.


If someone told you: buy me dinner and I'll sell you my ticket for what I paid for it. Is that scalping?

(I edited the quote from my post since I edited the original post, for clarity. In the case mentioned, the profit is actually $30 - the cost of dinner at a decent restaurant.)
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby lemur » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:36 pm

if someone pocketed $1000+ on the sale of a ticket... and then you found out that they raffled it and over 200 people paid $5 each for a chance at a ticket..

is that scalping ?

is it ethical?
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby skyhawkecks » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:42 pm

There are people on Craigslist selling face value tickets BUT you must purchase this other item along with it...

For example: Someone in SF bay area is selling two face value tickets PLUS a grand piano for $1000.

Is that "ethical?"

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby lemur » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:47 pm

there was a buncha BS about people doing exactly that for the tickets to the london olympics..

the few folks who were allowed to resell tickets were forbidden from selling over face value.. so they just included the ticket along with overpriced stuff like.... wine/accomodations/transit
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby capjbadger » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:00 pm

lemur wrote:if someone pocketed $1000+ on the sale of a ticket... and then you found out that they raffled it and over 200 people paid $5 each for a chance at a ticket..

is that scalping ?

is it ethical?

Do you know how much I love you for opening that can of worms? :twisted:

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby theCryptofishist » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:06 pm

There are a solid number of restaurants that send me home giddy with the quality of the food, and I haven't even paid $20, much less 30...
Do I live in foodie land? And shouldn't that make the cost of dinner even more? 2.5 percent more?
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby vargaso » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:23 pm

The only reason to sell a ticket above face value, whether the amount is $50 or $500, is to earn a profit. That clearly goes against Burning Man principles, and personally, I'd feel my trip was a little tainted if I did pay above face value. However, people do what they gotta do. I don't blame anyone for buying a scalped ticket, and only blame a little for those selling their extras this way. As for pro scalpers, well, they suck.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby TomServo » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:29 pm

skyhawkecks wrote:There are people on Craigslist selling face value tickets BUT you must purchase this other item along with it...

For example: Someone in SF bay area is selling two face value tickets PLUS a grand piano for $1000.

Is that "ethical?"


If it's a toy "Grand Piano", fuck no! The fact that they're adding stipulations is questionable. I've only bought tickets at face value..and were I to sell a ticket, it would be at face value plus shipping ONLY!
anything worth doing is worth overdoing..

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby BBadger » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:31 pm

EL OH EL! Look, more arbitrary ethical standards.

Code: Select all

if (profit < 30)
    scalping = false;
else
    scalping = true;


On the subject of profits:

Code: Select all

function raffle_profit (num_tickets, raffle_ticket_price, original_ticket_price)
{
    return num_tickets * raffle_ticket_price - original_ticket_price;
}

scalper_profit = raffle_profit(1, scalper_price, original_ticket_price);
Last edited by BBadger on Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby skyhawkecks » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:34 pm

TomServo wrote:
skyhawkecks wrote:There are people on Craigslist selling face value tickets BUT you must purchase this other item along with it...

For example: Someone in SF bay area is selling two face value tickets PLUS a grand piano for $1000.

Is that "ethical?"


If it's a toy "Grand Piano", fuck no! The fact that they're adding stipulations is questionable. I've only bought tickets at face value..and were I to sell a ticket, it would be at face value plus shipping ONLY!


I don't know much about pianos but it says it's worth $5000 and that it's a Wurlitzer upright.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby TomServo » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:36 pm

skyhawkecks wrote:
TomServo wrote:
skyhawkecks wrote:There are people on Craigslist selling face value tickets BUT you must purchase this other item along with it...

For example: Someone in SF bay area is selling two face value tickets PLUS a grand piano for $1000.

Is that "ethical?"


If it's a toy "Grand Piano", fuck no! The fact that they're adding stipulations is questionable. I've only bought tickets at face value..and were I to sell a ticket, it would be at face value plus shipping ONLY!


I don't know much about pianos but it says it's worth $5000 and that it's a Wurlitzer upright.


Then that sounds like a deal! But I'd point out to the seller, the difference between an upright and a grand piano.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby knowmad » Tue Jul 17, 2012 5:23 pm

moonwatcher wrote:If you do not already have your ticket(s), it is very possible that you will be looking at the re-sale market for your ticket.
There is the August 3rd sale of the last 1000 tickets, but that will be a gamble.


yeah until just recently that was a chance I was willing to take*, But to gamble with a shady resale on Craigs list? No SkankYou.

Personally I'm glad the org did the 1000 Aug Re-lotto. I believe it could really leave scalpers (yeah the guy scalper who thinks $40 profit or the ability to drop $30 on a meal at a Decent Restaurant is legit.) Holding a pile of worthless tickets to an event they never had the intention of going to. perhaps they will learn not to Fuck with burners. the profit to hassle ratio is too low.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby Tanzremix » Tue Jul 17, 2012 5:33 pm

knowmad wrote:the profit to hassle ratio is too low.

Face Value or Fuck off



*looks like I'll be going so it's kinda moot.


Profit to hassle was always too low for real scalpers, what you're seeing now is opportunism caused in part by poor policy on the part of the org with respect to transparency, and also because tickets are just now finally hitting the marketplace.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby kiss-o-matic » Wed Jul 18, 2012 3:24 am

What are Ebay's current fees? I'm thinking for an international sale (out of sellers hands) + Paypal it's at least 10%... maybe 11%. Nobody seems to be posting proof of their tier either. Should would-be-online-ticket buyers assume face is $420 + shipping + ebay's gouging fees? That's close to $500. Another 2.6% or so for international burners to offset Paypal's awful exchange rate?

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby BBadger » Wed Jul 18, 2012 6:38 am

Paypal charges a 3.2% standard PP fee + 1% international transaction fee = 4.2%. No idea about what eBay charges for listing/sales. I'm not really that convinced these people are just calculating out their zero-loss costs in the eBay cost. If they were, they'd probably include the calculation and reasoning in the item description, or just avoid dealing with possibly being scammed out of their money through an eBay transaction and sell it directly.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby remi » Wed Jul 18, 2012 7:10 am

Face value or fuck off. The seller should eat the charge for being "that guy" who purchased a ticket they don't need, helping cause the the "ticket fiasco."

Just my opinion.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby Tanzremix » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:21 am

remi wrote:Face value or fuck off. The seller should eat the charge for being "that guy" who purchased a ticket they don't need, helping cause the the "ticket fiasco."

Just my opinion.


Ideally yes, but a lot can happen in 6-7 months of someone's life, and trying to cover costs on their end doesn't really strike me as particularly immoral. But then we're talking a markup consisting of shipping and handling costs and/or ebay/paypal fees; anything over that is a personal markup for sure. If all tickets were able to be STEPed we wouldn't even have that issue.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:37 am

Have the seller send a pic of the back of the ticket where the price is printed.
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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby kiss-o-matic » Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:33 pm

BBadger wrote:Paypal charges a 3.2% standard PP fee + 1% international transaction fee = 4.2%. No idea about what eBay charges for listing/sales. I'm not really that convinced these people are just calculating out their zero-loss costs in the eBay cost. If they were, they'd probably include the calculation and reasoning in the item description, or just avoid dealing with possibly being scammed out of their money through an eBay transaction and sell it directly.


It's not a game of hot potato yet, but I don't think any reasoning is going to do much. The market value for tickets w/o a BIN option is pretty much set, regardless of the reasoning, and that seems to be dropping. Will be interesting to see what happens after August 3rd.

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Re: Ethical tickets: what is a fair markup for re-sale ticke

Postby BBadger » Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:48 pm

I always click the "Bide Your Time" button on those auctions.
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Re: Ethical tickets.... Fireball

Postby nocturnal_steve » Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:04 am

I got my ticket at face value from a Burner who could not make it .... minus the Fireball .

Since the original purchaser was the beneficiary of the Fireball, is that scalping ?


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