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Information Overload in a Network of Targeted Communication

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  • Timothy Van Zandt

    ()
    (INSEAD)

Abstract

As the costs of generating and transmitting information fall, the main bottlenecks in communication are becoming the human receivers, who are overloaded with information. For networks of targeted communication, I discuss the meaning of information overload, provide a theoretical treatment as the outcome of strategic interaction between senders, and examine mechanisms for allocating the attention of receivers. Such mechanisms increase the cost of sending messages and thereby shift the task of screening messages from the receivers to the senders, who know the contents of the messages. If the communication cost is low, then a tax on sending messages benefits all the senders if either the tax is redistributed to them as lump-sum transfers or their information about the receivers is sufficiently accurate.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by The RAND Corporation in its journal RAND Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 35 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (Autumn)
Pages: 542-560

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Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:35:y:2004:3:p:542-560

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References

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  1. Stegeman, Mark, 1991. "Advertising in Competitive Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 210-23, March.
  2. Diamond, Peter A., 1971. "A model of price adjustment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 156-168, June.
  3. Butters, Gerard R, 1977. "Equilibrium Distributions of Sales and Advertising Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 465-91, October.
  4. Grossman, Gene M & Shapiro, Carl, 1984. "Informative Advertising with Differentiated Products," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 63-81, January.
  5. Stahl, Dale O, II, 1989. "Oligopolistic Pricing with Sequential Consumer Search," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 700-712, September.
  6. Robert, Jacques & Stahl, Dale O, II, 1993. "Informative Price Advertising in a Sequential Search Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(3), pages 657-86, May.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Simon P. Anderson & André de Palma, 2009. "Information congestion," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 40(4), pages 688-709.
  2. Benjamin Chiao & Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, 2006. "Using Uncensored Communication Channels to Divert Spam Traffic," Working Papers 06-20, NET Institute, revised Oct 2006.
  3. Makarov, Uliana, 2011. "Networking or not working: A model of social procrastination from communication," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 574-585.
  4. Maria Arbatskaya & Hideo Konishi, 2013. "Consumer Referrals," Emory Economics 1310, Department of Economics, Emory University (Atlanta).
  5. Simon P. Anderson & André de Palma, 2007. "Information Congestion: open access in a two-sided market," THEMA Working Papers 2007-10, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  6. repec:hal:wpaper:halshs-00575074 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. repec:hal:cesptp:hal-00517721 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Simon P. Anderson & André De Palma, 2012. "Shouting to be Heard in Advertising," Working Papers hal-00742240, HAL.
  9. Alexandre de Cornière, 2013. "Search Advertising," Economics Series Working Papers 649, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  10. Alexandre de Cornière & Romain De Nijs, 2013. "Online Advertising and Privacy," Economics Series Working Papers 650, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  11. Chiao, Benjamin & MacKie-Mason, Jeffrey, 2012. "Using uncensored communication channels to divert spam traffic," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 173-186.
  12. Simon P. Anderson & André de Palma, 2012. "Competition for attention in the Information (overload) Age," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 43(1), pages 1-25, 03.
  13. Maria Arbatskaya & Hideo Konishi, 2013. "Consumer Referrals," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 851, Boston College Department of Economics.
  14. Nobuo Matsubayashi, 2008. "Product design rivalry: multiple-attributes approach to differentiation," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(7), pages 555-563.
  15. Eilon Solan & Eran Reshef, 2005. "The Effect of Filters on Spam Mail," Discussion Papers 1402, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  16. Florian Hoffmann & Roman Inderst & Marco Ottaviani, 2013. "Hypertargeting, Limited Attention, and Privacy: Implications for Marketing and Campaigning," Working Papers 479, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  17. Khim Yong, Goh & Kai-Lung, Hui & I.P.L., Png, 2008. "Social Interaction, Observational Learning, and Privacy: the "Do Not Call" Registry," MPRA Paper 8225, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  18. Larbi Alaoui & Fabrizio Germano, 2012. "Time scarcity and the market for news," Economics Working Papers 1348, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Dec 2013.
  19. Eran Reshef & Eilon Solan, 2005. "Analysis of Do-Not-Spam Registry," Discussion Papers 1411, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  20. Palacios-Huerta, Ignacio & Prat, Andrea, 2010. "Measuring the Impact Factor of Agents within an Organization Using Communication Patterns," CEPR Discussion Papers 8040, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Alexandre De Cornière, 2009. "Targeted advertising with consumer search: an economic analysis of keywords advertising," PSE Working Papers halshs-00575074, HAL.

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