Is there a difference between trading tickets with a friend for a stay at their vacation home and scalping tickets for a big game? One you might see as a legal trade and the other as obviously illegal. To the IRS there is no difference, all are taxable. If you are casually swapping tickets you might not even think of taxes in such a small, one off trade. But scalping tickets for a huge profit, clearly the IRS is going to want its cut.