July 18, 2019 / 12:51 PM / a month ago

CORRECT-UPDATE 1-Viagogo says won court backing in dispute with UK watchdog

(Corrects to say that CMA said it would take further legal action in July, not November 2018, in paragraph six)

July 18 (Reuters) - Ticket reseller Viagogo said on Thursday the London High Court had judged it to have complied with an order from Britain’s competition watchdog to display the face value of tickets on its website.

Viagogo and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have been in court on the issue pertaining to the use of “hover text” to display the face value of tickets and the deadlines for people to claim for refunds. Hover text is when users place their cursor over certain text to get additional information on a website.

CMA had also stated that the company was selling tickets with resale restrictions, misleading on availability of tickets and non-disclosure of certain seat numbers.

Earlier this month, the regulator had said it would take further legal action against the company for contempt of court following concerns that it had failed to comply fully with a November 2018 court order.

The judgement on Thursday, which was awarded in London, came after Viagogo had sought declaratory relief from the court on whether the manner in which Viagogo displays face value on its UK website complies with the November 2018 order.

CMA, in early July, had said its legal action follows several warnings from the watchdog that the company had not done enough to overhaul the way it presents information on its website.

The secondary ticketing market, which resells tickets for events ranging from pop concerts to tennis and soccer matches, has come under fire from politicians and regulators for sometimes sky-high prices and misleading customers.

“Today’s judgement does not mean that Viagogo is compliant with the court order the CMA secured against it,” CMA said, adding that it still thinks that Viagogo is breaching parts of the order and will move forward with legal proceedings for contempt of court against the website.

CMA said that Viagogo cannot use “hover over text” unless specifically allowed by the order and that it needs to stop displaying important information about deadlines under its guarantee in a similar manner. (Reporting by Sangameswaran S in Bengaluru; editing by Patrick Graham, Bernard Orr)

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