Thursday, February 12, 2009

Ticketmaster trouble ahead

OK, so I was wrong when I said analog TV would end next week (serves me right for believing the government). But it looks like I got one prediction right.

Open IT Strategies, Februrary 8:

The change in administration is also going to bring a change in antitrust policy, something that (unlike economic stimulus) can happen relatively quickly.
Wall Street Journal, February 12, p. B2:
Two Democrats in Congress called on the Justice Department Wednesday to block the merger of Live Nation Inc. and Ticketmaster Entertainment Inc., an early salvo in what promises to be a test of the Obama administration's effort to strengthen antitrust enforcement. …

Christine Varney, President Obama's pick to head the Justice Department's antitrust division, is a former commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission with a reputation for favoring tough enforcement.
The folks at Ticketmaster may be rapacious, but they’re not stupid. Look for them to frantically make concessions — particularly those that these grandstanding politicians can trumpet as helping the “little guy” — in hopes of saving the deal.

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