As Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine shows promising results, the live event industry grapples with safety
On November 9th, pharmaceutical company Pfizer announced their promising progress with a COVID-19 vaccine. The day the news broke, Live Nation Entertainment — a leading global event producer and venue operator — saw a 22% increase in share price. A post-quarantine world appears within sight, though COVID cases in Philly are spiking, and live event production companies and venues are continue to be wary of potential outbreaks and superspreader events, while simultaneously pursuing strategies to offer safe live events.
Ticketmaster, a Live Nation subsidiary, is building a smartphone-based platform to monitor attendees’ vaccination status: in order to gain entrance to Ticketmaster-associated shows, concertgoers will need to provide proof of receiving a vaccine, or test negative for COVID-19 within a 24-72 period before the show. Ticketmaster would never have access to concertgoer’s medical records; instead, an independent health pass company, like CLEAR, would verify one’s vaccination status and COVID-19 test result, before providing concertgoer’s with access to attend the event.
Ticketmaster’s plan is still under development, and will likely not roll out in the near future: the FDA has yet to approve of any complex system to verify one’s vaccination status, let alone a vaccine. However, Billboard reports that Ticketmaster president Mark Yovich is confident that the demand for digital screening services across a variety of industries (like airlines and theme parks) will attract new venture capitalists and startups to invest in the burgeoning market.
“We’re already seeing many third-party health care providers prepare to handle the vetting — whether that is getting a vaccine, taking a test, or other methods of review and approval – which could then be linked via a digital ticket so everyone entering the event is verified,” Yovich told Billboard.