The NY Post had an article today about Jets fans looking to unload their personal seat licenses.
In the days since Gang Green’s miserable season ended, secondary-market Web sites have been flooded with thousands of ads by Jets fans offering PSLs at bargain-basement prices. More than 1,100 Jets PSLs alone were listed for sale last week at seasonticketrights.com, the world’s largest PSL broker. Most were priced well below what fans originally paid.
“I’ve come to the conclusion it’s just cheaper to go to road games and buy home games through StubHub,” said Kenny Scarabaggio, a season-ticket holder since 1983. “This whole PSL process was a rip-off.”
If you aren't familiar with the concept of a personal seat license, it's a fee you pay the team for the right to buy tickets. It's kind of like if you went into a deli and wanted to buy a $5 sandwich. In this case, the deli might charge you $10 for a personal sandwich license. After you pay the deli the $10 up front for the sandwich license, the deli then allows you to pay an additional $5 for the sandwich. Sound outrageous? Welcome to professional sports.
I think it's unfortunate how many teams now view their fans as cash dispensers. I understand it's a business. I understand you might say if you don't like the prices, don't go. I think that misses the point. A lot of people can't afford to go. With the prices some teams charge for parking, tickets, and food, it's just not feasible for a lot of families to go to games. It's really unfortunate.
Teams exist to make money. I get that. Fans give teams undying loyalty, though. Just because teams are allowed to view sports as a cold hard business does not make that the right approach. I admire the teams that go out of their way to do good things for their fans. I'm thinking of the time Arthur Blank of the Falcons lowered ticket prices after his team had a bad year. There are gestures the team can make to show their fans they are valued. It makes the fans feel good.
Unfortunately, the Jets charge PSL's and then some of the highest ticket prices in the league for a product that has been one of the worst in the league. Some people complain about fans not giving the team the benefit of the doubt for a bad year. Well, this saga has a lot to do with it.