Letitia James Joins Republicans on Ticketmaster Monopoly Lawsuit

November 3, 2022, New York, USA: Letitia James during the US Vice President Harris visit to Barnard College in New York as she delivers remarks at a GOTV event with Governor Kathy Hochul (D-NY) and Lieutenant Governor Delgado. Former Secretary of State and Presidential candidate for Democratic Party, Hilary Clinton and New York Attorney General Letitia James and Senate majority leader , Chuck Schumer and other democratic politicians are also present at the event campaigning for Governor Hochul who is racing against Republican Lee Zeldin in the coming midterm elections on November 8th. (Foto: Niyi Fote/TheNews2/Deposit Photos)

A group of bipartisan state attorneys general as well as the District of Columbia have joined the US Justice Department’s antitrust lawsuit against Live Nation, the parent company of Ticketmaster.

According to court documents from the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, 29 state attorneys general, including Florida’s Ashley Moody and New York’s Letitia James, joined the DOJ’s long-anticipated lawsuit which accuses Live Nation of abusing its market dominance to harm ticket buyers.

Regulators allege that the country’s largest concert promoter and ticketing website masterminded a plan to quash its competition. The lawsuit is seeking a jury trial to break up Live Nation’s monopoly.

If the suit succeeds, it could result in sweeping changes in the live events market which came under scrutiny in 2022 after glitches at Ticketmaster’s website prevented millions of fans from purchasing tickets to singer Taylor Swift’s “Eras” tour.

Critics of Ticketmaster’s parent company argued that the ticket debacle revealed that the lack of competition in the industry had created harm for ticket buyers, including poor customer service, expensive fees, resale restrictions, and confusion over pricing.

In a May 23 statement announcing that New York State was joining the lawsuit, Attorney General Letitia James said Ticketmaster had “unfairly and illegally run the world of live events.” She accused Ticketmaster of using its monopoly to “overcharge fans, bully venues, and limit artists.”

Live Nation called the allegations in the suit “baseless” and argued in a statement that the lawsuit would not solve the issues with “ticket prices, service fees, and access to in-demand shows.”

The company said that while describing Ticketmaster as a monopoly might lead to a short-term “PR win” for the Justice Department, it would ultimately “lose in court because it ignores the basic economics of live entertainment.”

Live Nation argued that its net profit in FY 2023 was only 1.4 percent, far below the Justice Department’s other “targets in the tech sector.” The company pointed out that the DOJ’s other targets Apple and Google each posted profits of more than 24 percent for the same period.