In Defense of Ticket Scalping
In the comments to a South East Missourian editorial, somebody who calls himself (or herself) "trimetrov" asks:
There are no "bargains" in scalping – how is paying MORE than face value ever a bargain??
If people wanted to sit behind home plate, they would have paid for it beforehand, not for more money later…except that the ticket brokers already bought all the seats.
Allow me to address this challenge. This writer posits that the people paying more for tickets through a third party are the same people who would have, had they had the chance, bought them at the original price when they were first sold. I don’t think that’s the case. Ticket brokers aren’t the only ones who want to make money stadiums want to make money too. If fans were willing to pay a higher price from the start, the tickets would have been given a higher face value. You could argue that the original seller couldn’t price-discriminate, and now ticket-brokers come in and make a profit from charging different prices to different consumers. But that doesn’t make sense either, because stadiums already offer tickets for different seats at a range of prices.
If, on the day of a game, no one is willing to sell a ticket for face value, paying more than face value may indeed be a bargain. I would rather pay twice the face value from a reliable ticket broker than three times the face value from a fan.