Big Hit gets strict to fight scalpers

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Big Hit gets strict to fight scalpers

On the first day of K-pop sensation BTS’s first-ever fan event and concert in Busan this weekend, a number of people were blocked from entering the venue although they had tickets in their hands.

Officials from Big Hit Entertainment, the management agency of BTS, demanded buyer information on the tickets match the ticket holder’s identity documents at the event Saturday.

Teenage fans who bought tickets using their parents’ names were turned down, while students who brought copies of their student ID cards instead of their actual IDs were not accepted either.

Big Hit said it posted an announcement on ticket purchasing sites, BTS’s fan cafe and social media that it would undergo tighter identification checks before opening online ticketing for the Busan concerts.

Although fans and their parents complained about the stricter-than-expected practice, the company did not budge and remained adamant about the ticket-ID matching requirements.

Insiders said it is part of the K-pop industry’s efforts to prevent rampant ticket scalping in Korea.

As popularity of K-pop stars has been flying high, fans have to go through fierce competition to get tickets for concerts by their most beloved K-pop idols.

Buying tickets for high-profile performances is so competitive that the media and online ticket buyers call the experience “piketing,” a portmanteau of the Korean word for “bloody” with “ticketing.”

“Parents who bought tickets for their children might feel it was unfair. But the agency has already noticed it, and there’s no exception,” said an unnamed official from a management firm. “This time, Big Hit’s handling will probably arouse awareness about ticket scalping.”

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