Google has failed in its appeal against an order for it to prohibit the purchasing of ads promoting tickets sold by unauthorised secondary ticketing platforms, including Viagogo and Stubhub, in France.

Google was attempting to reverse the ruling made in favour of French live music association Prodiss in 2020. It has now been ordered to pay Prodiss €300,000 (£263,000) in damages at the Paris Court of Appeals.

It has been ruled that both Google France and the home of Google’s European headquarters, Google Ireland, must prohibit the hosting of advertisements in France from resale marketplaces that do not have authorisation from event organisers.

It has been against French law since 2012 to sell, or provide the means to sell, event tickets without approval from the event organisers.

The Face-value European Alliance for Ticketing (FEAT), which welcomed the decision, said that when Google imposed a brief ban on advertising from viagogo in 2019, visits to the viagogo’s UK website fell by almost 80% and visits to the global site went down by nearly two thirds.

FEAT director Sam Shemtob said, “This is a big win for those of us who want to see tickets in the hands of fans and not sold on by price-gouging touts. Rightfully, a lot of fans’ anger gets focused on the resale platforms themselves, but Google is a major player in steering people away from face value tickets sold by the primary seller, even when there are still tickets available. The clearer Google’s role becomes for all to see, the better.”

Prodiss CEO Malika Séguineau said, “This is a landmark decision for us. We are very pleased that the court of appeal has ruled in favour of protecting the rights of the producers and the rights of the audience. After several previous decisions against illegal platforms over the last years, this is another step in the right direction to ensure a fair, safe, and legal process for ticket sales in France.”