Controversial ticketing platform Viagogo has copped a $7 million fine for misleading Australians on ticket scarcity

German sports fan tell Viagogo what they think of it. (Pressefoto Ulmerullstein bild via Getty Images)
  • The federal court has fined Viagogo $7 million fine for misleading conduct.
  • The penalty comes after the reseller was found to have made misleading representations over ticket scarcity, fees and its “official” status as a ticket vendor.
  • The court also issued an injunction preventing Viagogo from continuing its practices.
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If you’ve ever missed out on a ticket to a major gig, sports game, or event, then you’re probably more than familiar with Viagogo.

Having frustrated plenty of Australians over the years, justice may have been served on Friday after the federal court made Viagogo pay for misleading Australia on fees and ticket availability.

The ticket reseller was fined $7 million, settling a long-running case brought against it by competition watchdog the ACCC over its business practices.

Last year the court ruled against Viagogo, which is based out of Switzerland, finding it had made false and misleading representations.

Chief amongst them was to have portrayed itself to Australians as an “official” ticket source, rather than simply an online marketplace. ACCC chair Rod Sims said Viagogo had also added an “extraordinarily high” 27% resale fee on top of the asking ticket price, which it didn’t disclose until checkout.

It also projected a distorted view of ticket scarcity. By advertising that there were only a few tickets left on the platform, the court ruled that Viagogo had misled customers to think there were limited tickets available anywhere.

“Viagogo’s claims misled consumers into buying tickets by including claims like ‘less than 1 per cent tickets remaining’ to create a false sense of urgency,” Sims said in a statement at the time.

Friday’s judgement also included an injunction preventing Viagogo from continuing such practices in future and to pay the ACCC legal costs.

With a few more events hopefully hitting the calendar from here on out, it’s a good reminder to go straight to the source when it comes to tickets.