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Rude Awakening

The Clap Your Hands Say Yeah Casbah show sold out an hour after tickets went on sale January 21. The day after, an eBay member in Atlanta, Georgia, under the name "uneedsomethin," was scalping ten tickets. Two people (with the same last name) in Georgia purchased 40 tickets. A person in Washington state purchased 20. Tickets with a face value of $15 were marked up to $75; someone was selling two for $199.99.

"We've never had a problem with people buying large amounts of tickets for resale," Casbah owner Tim Mays says. He acknowledges that buzz bands such as the Arcade Fire and Wolf Parade sold out after a month, not minutes. "This is new to us."

Mays contacted Front Gate tickets, which has handled online ticket sales for the Casbah since April of 2005. Front Gate said they could research the buyers to see if they had a history of scalping but told Mays he could choose to cancel the ticket sales. He chose the latter recourse, which put 60 tickets back on the market.

"They're going to be in for a rude awakening," Mays says of the scalpers. Though he cannot press charges against them (local officials would have to catch them), they might get in trouble with eBay for trying to sell tickets they don't have. A buy limit of four was placed on the tickets that were put back into the system. Mays will impose the same limit on upcoming shows that have the potential to sell out.

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The Clap Your Hands Say Yeah Casbah show sold out an hour after tickets went on sale January 21. The day after, an eBay member in Atlanta, Georgia, under the name "uneedsomethin," was scalping ten tickets. Two people (with the same last name) in Georgia purchased 40 tickets. A person in Washington state purchased 20. Tickets with a face value of $15 were marked up to $75; someone was selling two for $199.99.

"We've never had a problem with people buying large amounts of tickets for resale," Casbah owner Tim Mays says. He acknowledges that buzz bands such as the Arcade Fire and Wolf Parade sold out after a month, not minutes. "This is new to us."

Mays contacted Front Gate tickets, which has handled online ticket sales for the Casbah since April of 2005. Front Gate said they could research the buyers to see if they had a history of scalping but told Mays he could choose to cancel the ticket sales. He chose the latter recourse, which put 60 tickets back on the market.

"They're going to be in for a rude awakening," Mays says of the scalpers. Though he cannot press charges against them (local officials would have to catch them), they might get in trouble with eBay for trying to sell tickets they don't have. A buy limit of four was placed on the tickets that were put back into the system. Mays will impose the same limit on upcoming shows that have the potential to sell out.

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