19 Feb 2019

Buy from official websites, ComCom urges after Viagogo injunction dismissed

3:37 pm on 19 February 2019

The Commerce Commission is urging people to be vigilant when using ticket re-seller Viagogo, after its bid for an interim injunction against the website was dismissed.

LONDON, UK - JANUARY 8TH 2018: The homepage of the official website for Viagogo - the online ticket marketplace for ticket resale, on 8th January 2018.

Photo: 123RF

The regulator was seeking an injunction to stop the Switzerland-based website from making what it said were further breaches of the Fair Trading Act.

It claimed the website breached the Act by misrepresenting itself as an official seller, making misleading claims about the availability of tickets, and advertising the incorrect price for tickets.

Justice Courtney ruled the jurisdiction to allow the injunction did not exist and dismissed the application as Viagogo had not yet been formally served.

An attempt to serve a formal injunction notice was made to the website, but Viagogo insisted it had to be served in its jurisdiction of Switzerland - not in New Zealand.

Commission Chairman Dr Mark Berry said they were now focusing on preparing their case for the main hearing against the website.

"We knew this was not an easy course but we had hoped to get interim orders to protect New Zealand consumers until we could have the court hear our substantive case against Viagogo," Dr Berry said.

He is urging consumers to purchase tickets from official websites.

"Avoid clicking on the first internet search result you see for an event. Scroll down the page and find the official ticket outlet or if you aren't sure visit the artist's website to find out who the official ticket seller is,"Dr Berry said.

A date for the substantive hearing is yet to be set by the court.

A spokesperson for Viagogo said the company was pleased with the ruling.

"This is a significant legal victory for Viagogo," they said.

"For over a decade, millions of customers have been successfully using viagogo which is why we remain committed to providing a secure platform for people to sell as well as buy sport, music and entertainment tickets to events in New Zealand and all over the world."

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