[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 April 2007, 07:33 GMT 08:33 UK
Confessions of a teen ticket tout
By Caroline Briggs
Entertainment reporter, BBC News

With many concert tickets in high demand, touting is a big issue among music fans. Nottingham schoolboy Liam, 15, explains why he sells tickets on eBay.

I'm 15 and I'm at school at the moment, so ticket touting seems to be the only way I can make a good income.

I started touting last September. I just had a look on eBay to see how much tickets were going for, and thought, 'Wow, I can make this amount of money', so I have just gone from there.

Gwen Stefani tickets on eBay
Liam says he has made more than 500 profit so far
I have bought tickets for Lily Allen, The Killers, Placebo, Kings of Leon and Gwen Stefani.

I think there are two ways of looking at the issue.

You can think it's taking away the chance for genuine fans to get their tickets, but I've got to make my money and it's better than being like most kids and going out causing trouble on the streets.

I decide whose tickets I'm going to get by looking at any media coverage they have been getting, whether they are good singers, and if there is likely to be enough demand. I also look on the internet at people's gig reviews.

When they go on sale, I log on to the Seetickets website or Aloud.com - any ticket service really.

My friends are a little bit annoyed that I'm not going out at six o'clock in the morning to do a paper round like them

I make sure I'm one of the first on there, bang on nine o'clock, because what tends to happen is that as more and more people get onto the website, there will be like an overload and it will crash.

For the time being, I've been spending the profit on my social life, so I'm only buying pairs of tickets.

But I managed to get a couple of tickets for The Police not long ago, so hopefully with the money that comes in from that, I'm going to build up to about 400 and from there I can start buying wholesale lots.

I sell most of my tickets on eBay, but you can sell them anywhere - Gumtree.com, any touting website, you can do whatever you like really.

I bought four tickets for The Killers tickets and I made 184 profit. Kings of Leon, I made 40 on them, Placebo 40, Take That I made 50 on. I imagine I can make about 150 on the Police. So I'm guessing about 500 or 600 since I started.

It is a risk because there is no guarantee the concerts will sell out
There is a guilt part to it, but it's like any business thing - you are there to make your money.

At the end of the day, if people are prepared to sell at that price and people are willing to buy at that price, and it's mutual agreement, I think there is no problem.

My friends are a little bit annoyed that I'm not going out at six o'clock in the morning to do a paper round like them, but they have got the money to do it as well. It's just being able to be bothered to do it and risking your money.

And it is a risk because there is no guarantee that they will sell out.

I've had a few bands that haven't sold out, like Aerosmith. There are over 2,000 tickets left, but I managed to sell them at face value.

I didn't lose any money but I could have done without the hassle.

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific