British pop fans are up in arms at the sight of two massive Wembley gigs in the space of a fortnight, from Beyonce and Rihanna, being half-empty despite ticketing outlets having officially sold out months ago – with ticket touts getting the blame.

Beyonce fans attending the second of her two gigs at London’s Wembley Stadium on Sunday night (July 3rd) posted pictures via social media of the scores of empty seats and spaces around the venue, despite the singer herself referencing the ‘official’ fact that the gig was sold out while she was on-stage.

While the official reason can’t be known, it seems unlikely that so many thousands simply forgot to show up, and ticket touts appear to be the main reason for the situation.

BeyonceBeyonce's gig at Wembley Stadium on Sunday seemed half-empty

Using computer programmes called ‘bots’ (whose use has now been officially criminalised), people can buy up hundreds or thousands of tickets at a time before individual users get a chance to purchase them.

Back on June 24th, Rihanna’s gig at the same venue, with a capacity of 90,000, appeared to suffer the same problem, again despite its official status as ‘sold out’.

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The sight of empty seats at supposedly sold-out events has become increasingly common over the years, despite the efforts at clamping down on touts selling tickets second-hand at outrageous prices.

The new Harry Potter play ‘The Cursed Child’, which opened less than a month ago, has seen tickets going unsold online for prices of more than £2,000.

“We work hard to make the face value of the ticket as accessible to as many of the fans as possible,” said Mumford & Sons’ manager Adam Tudhope told the Daily Mirror recently. “So there’s nothing worse for the band playing a ‘sold-out’ show than looking out at empty seats because touts bought the tickets and tried to sell them on secondary sites at massively inflated prices.”

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