Programs

Accountability, Access and Engagement



To combat injustice in the entertainment industry and beyond, the USMTG developed three programs and iniatiatives to address and emphasize accountability, access and engagement


Legal Advocacy

As a part of the USMTG’s mission to create a national alliance of minority ticketing and entertainment event business owners, we advocate for laws that will reduce the disenfranchisement of minority business owners in the entertainment industry.

To accomplish our goal, USMTG has outlined 12 main discriminatory practices. We suggest banning each and offer alternative practices that will create a more equal entertainment industry for minorities and small business owners.

The USMTG is currently working on legislation in 22 states across the country.

Reduce Discriminatory Restrictions​

Our Comprehensive Legislative Package

Transferability of Tickets

Paperless ticketing is the practice of selling tickets which are non-transferable to another consumer. Paperless ticketing occurs when a consumer buys a ticket and is only allowed entry to an event with an ID or credit card attached to the person who originally purchased the ticket. Consumers deserve to have the right to do whatever they wish with their ticket once it is purchased. We propose that a permanent ban be placed on selling paperless tickets exclusively to an event.

Standardize Disclosures

Current ticket resale laws hold standards for disclosures on the secondary market that the primary market does not need to meet. The secondary market is held accountable for disclosing the face value of a ticket and money back guarantees. We propose standardizing all disclosures for both the secondary and primary market, including transparency on the face value of a ticket, money back guarantees and displaying ticket prices.

Transparency

The secondary market is blamed when event tickets sell out seemingly instantaneously and consumers are left confused without any options. This phenomenon is largely due to the entities that regulate admission to events. Those who operate places of entertainment often hold back 40-60% of tickets for promoters, artists, venues and VIP's to purchase or sell. Therefore, we propose a law disclosing the total number of tickets available and how many are available for the general public.

Free & Equal Access to Internet Marketing

Google, StubHub and Ebay have raised advertising costs for small businesses by using private label marketing tools. It is unlawful for search engines to discriminate against small businesses by engaging in unfair practices designed to bias search content in favor of Internet content providers paying the highest advertising fees. We propose banning search engines from disadvantaging small businesses based solely on the ability to pay high advertising costs.

Ban URL Restrictions

Currently, there are restrictions on retailer's use of URL descriptors. This inhibits smaller businesses from using clear language to describe the event, artist or venue. By prohibiting retailers from properly and clearly marketing the tickets being sold, this bill disadvantages smaller ticketing business compared to larger competitors. In addition, it prohibits online advertising while harming consumer's ability to accurately search for tickets at fair prices. We propose allowing ticket resellers to fairly use descriptive language in order to advertise to the general public.

Ban Ticket Pricing Floors

Various teams have mandated that a ticket cannot be sold or resold below a minimum ticket price. Ultimately, this disallows sellers from lowering ticket prices, which in effect raises prices on the market and creates a restraint on free trade. We propose banning a minimum price on all tickets.

Genre Restrictions

Venues impose restrictions on ticket distribution on certain genres and not others. Operators of places of entertainment cannot selectively apply certain terms or conditions to one event and not others depending on the kind of event. This includes concerts, musical performances, theatre productions, sporting events and all other entertainment events. We propose banning venues from imposing restrictions on ticket distribution for certain genres.

Geographic Restrictions

In many states, ticket resellers cannot operate within a certain distance of a venue. These distances are arbitrary and do not protect consumers. The closer to the venue that a consumer is, the safer their purchases will be as they can check the legitimacy of a ticket at the venue. In addition, these laws are unfair to tax paying and registered ticket sellers, especially when many places of entertainment are funded by tax payers.

License and Bond Fees

Several states, such as New Jersey and New York, have exorbitant licensing and bonding fees attached to annual applications for ticket resellers. These high costs are major barriers to smaller businesses and acts as a disincentive to smaller ticket resellers from registering within the state. We advocate that fees be reduced no more than $100.

Consumer Protection

Currently, ticket consumers cannot control how their personal information is being used by ticket resellers. Most commonly, the original consumer's name and other personal information is printed on the ticket. We propose that it is unlawful for the operator or ticketing service to print any personally identifiable information of a customer on a ticket to an event, unless the customer is able to remove or obscure the information on the ticket.

Third Party Sharing Agreements

Ticket sellers, such as Ticket Master, share customer information with the venue, team, artist, or league without consent from the customer. This breaches consumer privacy on every level. We propose that ticket sellers must have information sharing agreements with resellers, marketplaces and exchanges before sharing that information with third parties, including venues, artists, teams, leagues, etc.

Exclusive Ticketing Contracts

Places of entertainment are often funded by tax payers and should be open for all brokers to participate with. Exclusive contracts between publicly funded venues and primary marketplaces restrict small businesses from doing business with the venue. This is especially unfair when the broker is a paying for that venue to operate through taxes. We propose restricting public funded venues and organizations from creating exclusive contracts with ticket sellers and resellers.

USMTG believes that this comprehensive legislative package will not only offer more opportunities to minorities in the entertainment industry, but also support our success.


Annual Stadium Economic Reciprocity Report

 

The USMTG launched the pilot of our Annual Stadium Economic Reciprocity Report (SERR) in the Spring of 2019 to educate the general public and communities of color on stadiums in the U.S. that are funded by federal, state and local tax dollars. Our 2020 Annual Stadium Economic Reciprocity Report will be published in the Summer of 2020. 

SERR is a collection and assessment of data and information regarding publicly funded stadiums in the United States. Based on the collection and assessment of this data, the project provides grades for current stadiums and teams in the nation that have received subsidies and/or tax dollars. The grading scale is based on various components, including but not limited to, hiring practices, procurement deals with African American and ethnic minority owned businesses, demographic makeup of Board of Directors, cultural competency initiatives, diversity of their senior management team and inclusion of philanthropic programs. Our goal is to address and acknowledge where progress has been made while being direct in identifying those areas here progress is desperately needed. 

Following the published report, the USMTG will host a series of public forums on the final report to educate taxpayers, politicians, community advocates and business leaders. As professional sport teams, leagues and venues produce billions of dollars in revenue annually, we are concerned about the economic impact of these teams and stadiums on the surrounding communities that truly make the industry to successful.


Accountability - Engagement - Action

SERR Strategy & Goals

Corporate Accountability

Support sport leagues, teams and venues in meeting federal compliance standards by addressing points of weakness, as well as strength, and collaborating to create new initiatives that reduce the exclusion of local communities and businesses from the industry.

Economic Equity

Create sustainable and long-term economic and social enhancement in local communities. The sport industry is currently one of the largest economic engines in the communities we represent, and it is imperative that our communities have a meaningful seat at the table.

Create Change

Collaborate with local community members, advocates, politicians and stadium executives to create and implement diversity and inclusion initiatives specific to the needs of each community. Ultimately, initiating long-term change while improving corporate diversity and inclusion requirement for the following year.

Public Awareness

Increase awareness about the economic and social impact of publicly funded stadiums to taxpayers and community members locally and nationwide. By providing information that is otherwise less or not accessible, the general public will participate in issues directly affecting their lives.

Community Engagement

Increase community participation and community-led initiatives through forums and implementing feedback into the following year's initiative for corporate accountability. Interactive dialogue with community members, advocates, and politicians will support change on a structural and local level.

Educate

Offer clear and accessible tools and opportunities to disseminate knowledge and information on the everyday economic and social impact of stadium subsidies. Knowledge supplemented with action will hold corporations accountable to the communities that pay for their stadiums.


Community Engagement Partnerships

The US Minority Ticketing Group is invested in building a national network of organizations, businesses and institutions to effectively meet the needs of minority consumers, communities and businesses. Our goal to create equity in the entertainment industry and within our communities is underscored by the understanding that the entertainment industry impacts everyone, whether as a consumer, tax-payer or professional within it. 

Our organization’s work is deeply integrated with local and national communities, organizations and entertainment industry networks. Our partnerships with organizations, universities, businesses, churches and advocates strengthen our reach and impact by building community. Each partnership is unique and customized to meet the specific needs of each local community.

HOSEA Helps

HOSEA Helps is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based out of Atlanta, GA. HOSEA Helps works to prevent homelessness, provide financial resources, material products and services to families and individuals at risk of poverty or those that are currently living in poverty. The organization was founded by Hosea Williams, an American civil rights leader and activist, in 1971.

NAACP Housing Committee

The NAACP Housing Committee advocates for access to affordable housing, fights to eliminate public and private restrictive housing practices and combats housing discrimination. The committee aims to prevent displacement, increasing neighborhood socio-economic and racial diversity and create long-term legislative change.

Texas Southern University

Texas Southern University is a Historically Black College and University based in Houston, TX. TSU offers innovative programs and transforms students into lifelong learners, creative leaders and engaged citizens

UCONN school Of Business

The UConn School of Business is one of the most comprehensive business schools in the United States, as accredited by the AACSB. UConn School of Business is committed to integrating real world education with outstanding research and strategic outreach for its students.

Creative Gods

Creative Gods is a hybrid creative agency founded by Hezues R', a pioneering media entrepreneur. Hezeus R's expertise in production, design, advertising and marketing has positioned him to be the creative force behind many major brands, shows, products and productions.

NAACP: The One Million Jobs Campaign

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is one of the largest and most prominent civil rights organization in the United States. The NAACP's One Million Jobs Campaign is a nationwide campaign offering jobs, training and resources to one million formerly incarcerated people.

Nevada Partnership For Homeless Youth

The Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based out of Las Vegas. NPHY provides Southern Nevada's homeless youth with comprehensive services. They offer access to services for homeless youth 24 hours a day, stabilize youth out of poverty, meet youth's immediate need while also providing a safe and supportive environment on the path to self-sufficiency.

Broker Genius

Broker Genius is a pricing technology company in the secondary ticket market. Broker Genius invented the first-ever, automated dynamic pricing platform to support ticket brokers with easy and fast pricing for tickets with real-time market data.

The National Association of Ticket Brokers

The National Association of Ticket Brokers is a national business association that promotes consumer protection by establishing transparent and ethical procedures and standards in the secondary ticket industry.

Ticket Summit

Ticket Summit is an annual secondary ticket market trade show. Ticket Summit brings together hundreds of industry leaders and small business owners in the ticketing and live entertainment industries, providing industry professionals with the tools and information they need.