Frenzied fans are so desperate for seats to the teen sensation's 54-date "Best Of Both Worlds" tour, kicking off later this month, that venues have sold out in as little as four minutes, and ticket brokers are getting four-to-five times face value and more, creating a torrent of complaints from frustrated parents.
Some ducats are fetching thousands of dollars each.
Using advanced programs to get into computer systems before tickets go on sale to the public, brokers bought large amounts of tickets, circumventing the promoter's rule of four tickets per transaction at a maximum of $65 a pop.
The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm, who found asking prices as high as $20,000 on one ticket reseller's Web site, told her daughters they couldn't go.
"They're dying to go to the concert," Storm says. "They've been asking since the summer. I've been trying for months -- on the Internet, pulling every string I know, making phone calls, all to no avail."
Florida state legislator Dan Gelber's (D, Miami Beach) young daughters have also been shut out -- and he's sponsoring a bill to do rein in ticket brokers in the Sunshine State.
What the brokers did, he explained to Storm Wednesday, is "use an automatic dialling system to basically, literally in minutes, take all the tickets to the Hannah Montana concerts in Florida. So, the result was that everyday people just calling to get tickets for their kids were shut out. I could take my kids to the concert, but it would cost about $2,000, $3,000 for a family of four to go to a Walt Disney concert, which is obviously outrageous."
Gelber says his bill "brings the practice of the automated dialing within our Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act in Florida. The second thing it'll do is require the resellers to file a bond and register with the state of Florida, the way telemarketers have to. That's an industry that also can have some concerns with what they're doing. This brings these Internet folks into the state physically, and requires some penalties if they do these kinds of, I think, pretty predatory practices."