Comedian Louis C.K. made the technology world turn his direction when he decided to sell his latest comedy special himself, digitally, and DRM free. It was a smashing success. The $5 download proved a fresh model for artists in the broadband age.
Louis has again taken to task an entrenched business model, not television this time, but ticketing. For his shows, C.K. saw scalping rates as high as 25%, driving up the price of his shows for people who wanted to attend, by those who didn’t. That didn’t sit well.
So, he set out to sell his own tickets for his coming tour. Lowering the price in the act, the goal was the same as before: cut out the middle man, and keep the fan/artist relationship as close as possible. Component to his plan was a hardline policy against scalpers:
You’ll see that if you try to sell the ticket anywhere for anything above the original price, we have the right to cancel your ticket (and refund your money). This is something I intend to enforce. There are some other rules you may find annoying but they are meant to prevent someone who has no intention of seeing the show from buying the ticket and just flipping it for twice the price from a thousand miles away.