Ticket Scalping: A Battle between Economic Efficiency and Inequality

Economics Declassified

By Keya Daruwala | Edited by Aashni Rebello

Imagine that your favourite stand-up comedian is performing live at an event in your city. The tickets are priced fairly low, enough to give you the adrenaline rush that nudges you to book a ticket. You log in to the online ticket booking platform well in advance, feeling confident that you will be able to grab a seat. To your surprise, in the first thirty seconds, just as you are about to enter your payment details, you receive a notification. The event has been fully booked. You feel rather baffled, then disappointed.

What you have just witnessed, is an instance of ticket scalping. Your competitors in the race of booking a ticket were not humans, but scalper robots. These bots are specifically designed to purchase tickets in bulk for resale in the secondary market. Now, on realising that these tickets are being…

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