Schumer Calls for Ticketmaster Probe Over Suspicious Springsteen Sales

Sen. Charles Schumer wants to show Ticketmaster who's boss, after hundreds of Bruce Springsteen fans complained they were ripped off by the ticket seller's Web site. 

Fans reported that when they tried to buy tickets for Springsteen's upcoming tour last Monday, they were redirected from the Ticketmaster site to a subsidiary, TicketsNow, which specializes in reselling tickets above face value. 

Schumer, D-N.Y., on Sunday joined Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., in calling for the Federal Trade Commission to investigate. 

"It was a classic bait-and-switch," Schumer said. "'We don't have the tickets at $75, but maybe this site has them at $200.' Guess what? The same people owned both sites." 

Ticketmaster CEO Irving Azoff apologized for the company's actions, saying it would no longer direct fans to the subsidiary. 

But in a press conference laced with Boss references, Schumer accused Ticketmaster of shutting out Springsteen's loyal fans. 

"We can't let the screen doors slam on die-hard Boss fans," Schumer said. "Fans who thought they were going to the promised land of regular-priced tickets, found themselves in the badlands of ticket scalpers." 

Springsteen also published a letter to fans on his Web site condemning the practice of redirecting buyers to TicketsNow. 

"The abuse of our fans and our trust by Ticketmaster has made us as furious as it has made many of you. We will continue to do our utmost now and in the future to make sure that these practices are permanently curtailed on our tours," the letter said.