Congress Passes Act to Fight Online Scalping

By Amanda Wicks

“You shouldn’t have to fight robots to see something you love” may sound like what a futuristic action movie’s hero says before all hell breaks loose, but it’s actually a creed Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote in a The New York Times op-ed about the proposed Better Online Ticket Sales (BOTS) Act.

Related: Lin-Manuel Miranda Wants to Fight Scalper Bots

The BOTS Act proposed making it illegal for automated programs to scoop up tickets by bypassing security software designed to limit ticket sales, and then selling those tickets on second party sites like StubHub for an huge price surge. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman investigated just how much more bots charged for tickets, and, according to that report, found the general increase to be around 49%.

The Act passed the Senate last week and the House of Representatives yesterday, and will now proceed to President Obama for his signature of final approval. It will only be applicable to shows with over 200 people, but violations can now be prosecuted by Federal Trade Commission or individual states.

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