About The Ticket Economist
Hello! this is Christian Hassold, The Ticket Economist. Since 2006, I have researched and written about ticket resale, often referred to as ticket scalping. For decades ticket scalping was not perceived as legitimate enterprise. Large thanks to the internet and services like StubHub, ticket resale has proliferated and become a more widely accepted practice. Granted there is continued debate around ticket resale, specifically the practices of acquiring tickets and the (sometimes) high selling prices, a lot of people turn to the secondary market when they need to buy or sell tickets.
I became interested in ticket resale while living in the Kenmore Square neighborhood of Boston which is right next to Fenway Park, home of the Red Sox. Initially excited about living so close to the park, I tried without success to buy tickets from the Red Sox website pre-season. I was surprised to see thousands of Red Sox tickets on eBay selling at incredibly inflated prices. Initially, I was troubled by the experience (and mad at scalpers!). However, I later discovered that living in the neighborhood, you could walk out into a sea of ticket scalpers and sometimes find tickets at or below face value. Following this, I compared my experiences with Red Sox tickets to that of concert tickets. I also made a few contacts in the ticket resale business to understand both sides. These experiences prompted me to research the subject formally.
From 2006 to early 2008, I wrote an undergraduate research paper that examined internet-based ticket resale of concert tickets with the help of Al Roth, an economist and professor at Harvard Business School (now Stanford). The research paper was unique in that it observed ticket resale activity using eBay and StubHub data for more than 150 concerts over a two-year period. One of the key findings of that research was that scalped ticket prices gradually fall from the date they go on sale, often times falling below face value. The paper was never published, but it provided the opportunity to meet other scholars who researched the topic and exposure to a decent amount of literature on the subject, much of which is cited on this website.
In 2009, I launched this blog to give the benefit of this research and practical advice to the public. This work is a hobby, my day job is helping brands and retailers with digital strategy.
Availability for Speaking, Commentary, and Advice
I am a subject matter expert on ticket resale, ticket reselling technology, and methods for reducing speculation. The focus of my research has been concert tickets, though in recent years I have spent some time researching sporting events. I am not a good source of information for events like World Cup Soccer, The Olympic Games, or events outside the U.S. I usually have an opinion about everything else.
Requests and inquiries should be sent via in LinkedIn.
Featured in Press
Can Bruce Springsteen vanquish ticket scalpers? Marketplace Today. NPR.
Tragically Hip ticket scalping dilemma. News Talk 770 Calgary, Canada.