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Crackdown begins on 'ticket bots'

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New York is cracking down so-called "ticket bots," software used to snatch up tickets to concerts, plays and other events that are then resold at significantly higher prices.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday signed a new law creating penalties for those who use ticket bots to circumvent limits on the number of tickets one person can buy. The law also makes it illegal for someone to resell tickets they know were bought using ticket bots.

“These unscrupulous speculators and their underhanded tactics have manipulated the marketplace and often leave New Yorkers and visitors alike with little choice but to buy tickets on the secondary market at an exorbitant mark-up,” Cuomo said. “It’s predatory, it’s wrong and, with this legislation, we are taking an important step towards restoring fairness and equity back to this multi-billion dollar industry.”

A report from New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office found that third-party ticket resellers often use ticket bots to purchase large blocks of tickets, which are resold at a high mark-up.

"In recent years, it has become almost impossible to find affordable tickets – or even any tickets at all – for all popular shows," said Schneiderman. "Brokers armed with illegal, high-speed ticket-buying bots have kept too many New Yorkers from attending the shows, sporting events and cultural experiences that make New York so special."

Schneiderman say he worked with "Hamilton" creator Lin-Manuel Miranda to pass the law, which he says will help "bring sanity" to ticket buying.

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