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Superstars without talent? The Yule distribution controversy

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Author Info

  • Spierdijk, Laura

    (Dept. of Econometrics, University of Groningen)

  • Voorneveld, Mark

    ()
    (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

Abstract

Chung and Cox (1994) provided an intuitively appealing stochastic model which indicates that superstars may exist regardless of talent and which gives rise to the Yule distribution. We adopt a different empirical approach and test its goodness-of-fit using a parametric bootstrap and several powerful test statistics. Just like the discrete Pareto distribution, it is overwhelmingly rejected: it is a fairly accurate approximation of the lower quantiles of the superstar distribution, but overestimates the snowball effect that makes consumers purchase records of the most successful artists. In other words, the Yule distribution captures stardom, but not superstardom. A generalization of the Yule distribution provides an excellent fit in two of the three data sets.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stockholm School of Economics in its series Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance with number 658.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: 25 Apr 2007
Date of revision: 09 May 2007
Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0658

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Keywords: Superstardom; Yule distribution;

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References

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  1. Victor Ginsburgh & David Throsby, 2006. "Handbook of the Eonomics of Art and Culture," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/152412, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  2. Chung, Kee H & Cox, Raymond A K, 1994. "A Stochastic Model of Superstardom: An Application of the Yule Distribution," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(4), pages 771-75, November.
  3. Adler, Moshe, 2006. "Stardom and Talent," Handbook of the Economics of Art and Culture, Elsevier.
  4. Giles, David E., 2006. "Superstardom in the US popular music industry revisited," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 68-74, July.
  5. Cox, Raymond A. K. & Kleiman, Robert T., 2000. "A stochastic model of superstardom: evidence from institutional investor's All-American Research Team," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 43-53.
  6. Adler, Moshe, 1985. "Stardom and Talent," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 208-12, March.
  7. Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "The Economics of Superstars," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 845-58, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Francisco Alcalá & Miguel González-Maestre, 2012. "Artistic Creation and Intellectual Property: A Professional Career Approach," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(3), pages 633-672, 09.
  2. Martínez-Rodríguez, A.M. & Sáez-Castillo, A.J. & Conde-Sánchez, A., 2011. "Modelling using an extended Yule distribution," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 863-873, January.
  3. Brinja Meiseberg, 2014. "Trust the artist versus trust the tale: performance implications of talent and self-marketing in folk music," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 38(1), pages 9-42, February.

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