If You Go to a Gig in Finland and It’s Sh*t, You Can Get Your Money Back. By Law.

You don’t mess with the Finns. The country’s Consumer Disputes Board handed down a ruling last week that declares concert-goers are eligible for a refund if a given performance is “well below reasonably expected standards.”

Blame Chuck Berry for this. Back in 2013, he played a show in Helsinki where he really didn’t appear to be into it. A fan was outraged enough to demand his money back, a complaint he took all the way to the top. The CDB agreed.

This, of course, is a slippery slope. What, exactly, constitutes a gig that’s “well below reasonably expected standards?” Isn’t that little subjective?

Yes, but the bar for ruling in favour of a refund is pretty high, say the Finns.  A spokesperson for the CBD says “What is significant is a generally agreed view that the concert was a failure, as it was in the Chuck Berry case.”

Um, okay.  Let’s try that again.

Spokesperson Pauli Ståhlberg claims that the “issue of quality” is less relating to whether a performance is “good or bad by some objective measure” but “whether or not the performance meets the consumer’s expectations”.

Still clear as mud.

There is an exception: music festivals because they deal with a great number of acts, not just one headliner.

More at the NME.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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