The two most commonly cited reasons for the problems the Mets, Yankees, Giants and Jets have had selling tickets are the state of the economy and the fact their new stadiums come with much higher prices - including personal seat licenses for the football teams.

But I am convinced another significant factor is the dramatic rise both in the efficiency of the secondary market and the acceptance of it among the general public.

No longer must fans rely only on the teams themselves or shady brokers or scalpers. Now they simply can go to a ticket search engine such as or a specific site such as and find tickets on an as-needed basis - often at or below face value.

That factor clearly has hurt the Mets this season. Many of their season ticketholders in 2009 were unable to unload seats for face value and decided this year simply to join the crowd and rely on the secondary market.

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Eventually the teams themselves might have to take over this process and sell tickets the way airlines do - on a fluctuating basis, as the free market dictates.

Of course, all this assumes the secondary market continuing to be legal in New York, which is apparently getting a tad complicated.