The American tech giant has stopped the ticket reselling site from advertising on its platform, following on from court action related to the breach of consumer-protection law.
Last updated: 18th Jul 2019. Originally published: 17th Jul 2019
Several MP's, organizations and trade bodies representing the entertainment industry signed an open letter in 2018, which was sent to Google executives urging them to prevent Viagogo from advertising tickets that were being sold through the site. It is alleged that the platform, which is used to resell tickets for events, has broken consumer-protection law, allowing touts to sell tickets on at an inflated price.
Subsequently, the Competition and Marketing Authorities or CMA, took court action against Viagogo in August last year. As a result, the court ordered the ticketing company to improve the way it conducted its business, by informing consumers if there was a risk they could be turned away at the door and by giving more information regarding the intended event.
The CMA has recently announced that it plans to launch further court proceedings this year, stating that the Viagogo is in contempt of court. They have declared that the company is still giving consumers misleading information, such as misleading ticket-availability messages and incomplete addresses of businesses selling tickets. If the court finds that Viagogo has breached the law, the company could face huge fines.
Google has said that they are 'working closely' with the CMA and affirmed their stance on breaching their advertising policies. In a statement on Wednesday, Google explained, 'When people use our platform for help in purchasing tickets, we want to make sure that they have an experience they can trust. This is why we have strict policies and take necessary action when we find an advertiser in breach.'