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US: Songkick’s lawsuit against Ticketmaster takes new twist

 |  February 20, 2017

An executive at online ticket seller Ticketmaster has been accused of hacking computers and appropriating trade secrets by a rival.

On February 16, Songkick filed an amended complaint at the US District Court for the Central District of California, Western Division.

Songkick is a platform that allows artists to sell tickets directly to fans before they go on general sale. It merged with CrowdSurge in June 2015.

Songkick claimed that a former CrowdSurge executive accessed CrowdSurge’s protected computers and improperly acquired and used CrowdSurge’s trade secrets and confidential information.

The accused senior vice president, Stephen Mead, left CrowdSurge with “more than 85,000 CrowdSurge documents” and joined a Ticketmaster-owned company called TicketWeb, the claim said.

But, according to the claim, it didn’t end there: Mead provided the confidential information to his colleagues at the new company and provided them with unlawful access to CrowdSurge’s computers.

“This was part of Mead’s personal vendetta (and Ticketmaster’s collective desire) to ‘cut [CrowdSurge] off at the knees’, ‘bring down the hammer’ on CrowdSurge, and ultimately copy and thereby defeat CrowdSurge,” alleged the claim.

It also claimed that Mead had sent his new colleagues URLs to webpages of ticketing “stores” that CrowdSurge had customised for specific artist clients and potential artist clients.

In December 2015, Songkick filed its original complaint against Ticketmaster, alleging anti-competitive conduct and antitrust violations. Songkick claimed that Ticketmaster’s merger with concert promotion company Live Nation “not only removed Live Nation as a threat to Ticketmaster’s monopoly power, but enhanced that dominance”.

Full Content: Music Week

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