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> The venue has a perverse incentive allowing scalpers to buy every last ticket they can get their greedy little hands on. As long as a ticket gets sold, they don't care. Screw the fans.

Everything I've seen trying to explain the scalping phenomenon appeals to the idea that this is completely backwards from true. Specifically, the theory is that the venue's incentive is to fill seats, which is why tickets are so dramatically underpriced (price too low -> shortage of seats -> all seats get filled -> the act appears to be popular). From the venue's perspective, a seat sold to a scalper is a seat they lose money on and that might not be filled during the performance (since the scalper's incentive is to charge a realistic price), which is a double loss to the venue.

In sum, selling tickets to scalpers gets the venues an amount of money they don't want (they were guaranteed to sell out anyway), in order to generate an effect they don't want (some seats will be empty during the performance). Where's the perverse incentive?

Exactly, Scalpers are just buying "seat futures". If venues are selling these future contracts so low that they yield absurd profits, don't blame the scalpers...

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