Jingle Ball Fraud

A few weeks ago, Maggie Sullivan (like thousands of others in the tristate area) was excited and ready to go to Z100’s Jingle Ball, an annual concert series that always has an impressive lineup of performers. Her mother got the tickets a week before the Jingle Ball through a family connection. Her cousin picked them up from the city a week before the concert and checked to make sure these expensive tickets looked “legit.” He even did a cursory scan to look for the “Ticketmaster” logo. When the Sullivan clan arrived at the venue, they waited in a mob scene to check into the box office. The ticket taker, without scanning them, immediately declared that they were not real. Though they looked identical to the real tickets to Maggie and her group, the teller could tell they were fakes. With nothing to do about their unfortunate situation, the dejected children turned around and went home.  The Sullivans later tried calling their ticket connection, but never got an answer as to what happened. Maggie’s story is unfortunately not uncommon. People everywhere, desperate for tickets to their favorite concerts, troll around for them on sites like Craiglist, known to have trouble with scams. Yet even reliable sites like StubHub don’t seem safe anymore.

Buyer beware.

Another senior, Christie Kuehner, had an identical experience at the Jingle Ball. Three weeks before the concert, the Kuehner family bought floor seat tickets on StubHub, as a surprise for the littlest Kuehner, Grace, who is “obsessed” with One Direction. After a week of waiting for the tickets to arrive, they checked the tracking info with FedEx, who reported that the package had been delivered. After the Kuehners informed FedEx that they had not received the tickets, the company contacted StubHub who then contacted the seller. The tickets were then re-sent but still never arrived. FedEx finally tracked down the package and opened it to find out that there were no tickets inside. Essentially, the seller (through StubHub) had never had any tickets. Apparently, he sent an empty package to a slightly different address so it would look like a shipping error on FedEx’s part and delay the discovery that the Kuehners paid for tickets that didn’t exist. After two weeks of trying to sort out what had happened, StubHub apologized and not only reimbursed the Kuehners, but gave them a generous credit. They ended up getting tickets in the “nosebleed section” at the venue. While they still had a good time, it was not an experience they would like to repeat.

Internet scams have been a problem since the birth of the World Wide Web, but lately there has been a considerable increase in ticket fraud. Police have warned music fans to be wary of buying concert tickets online because of a rise in fraud. Buyers are cautioned to be wary of “too good to be true” tickets, ones that cost a fraction of what others are paying. In the month of October, authorities shut down over 100 online ticket scam websites. It is a tricky part of our world, the Internet–one must always be careful about how they choose to use it. Just ask Maggie and Christie.

Ann Abbott Freeman, Staff Writer

Posted by on January 8, 2013. Filed under School News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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