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On commercial media bias

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Abstract

Within the spokes model of Chen and Riordan (2007) that allows for non-localized competition among arbitrary numbers of media outlets, we quantify the effect of concentration of ownership on quality and bias of media content. A main result shows that too few commercial outlets, or better, too few separate owners of commercial outlets can lead to substantial bias in equilibrium. Increasing the number of outlets (commercial and non-commercial) tends to bring down this bias; but the strongest effect occurs when the number of owners is increased. Allowing for free entry provides lower bounds on fixed costs above which substantial commercial bias occurs in equilibrium.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 1133.

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Date of creation: Dec 2008
Date of revision: Apr 2009
Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:1133

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Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

Related research

Keywords: Commercial media; concentration and consolidation; media bias; self-censorship; ownership structure;

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References

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  1. Matthew Ellman & Fabrizio Germano, 2004. "What Do the Papers Sell?," Working Papers 149, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  2. Besley, Timothy J. & Prat, Andrea, 2002. "Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability," CEPR Discussion Papers 3132, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2008. "Competition and Truth in the Market for News," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(2), pages 133-154, Spring.
  4. Lisa George & Joel Waldfogel, 2003. "Who Affects Whom in Daily Newspaper Markets?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(4), pages 765-784, August.
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  7. Vicente Esteve & Francisco Requena, 2006. "A Cointegration Analysis of Car Advertising and Sales Data in the Presence of Structural Change," International Journal of the Economics of Business, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 111-128.
  8. Jonathan Reuter & Eric Zitzewitz, 2006. "Do ADS Influence Editors? Advertising and Bias in the Financial Media," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(1), pages 197-227, 02.
  9. Michael H. Riordan & Yongmin Chen, 2005. "Price and Variety in the Spokes Model," Discussion Papers 0405-20, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  10. Peitz, Martin & Valletti, Tommaso M., 2008. "Content and advertising in the media: Pay-tv versus free-to-air," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 949-965, July.
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  12. Simon P. Anderson & Stephen Coate, 2003. "Market Provision of Broadcasting: A Welfare Analysis," Virginia Economics Online Papers 358, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
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  14. Steven C. Salop, 1979. "Monopolistic Competition with Outside Goods," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 141-156, Spring.
  15. Petrova, Maria, 2008. "Inequality and media capture," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(1-2), pages 183-212, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Emilie Dargaud & Carlo Reggiani, 2012. "On the Price Effects of Horizontal Mergers: A Theoretical Interpretation," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 1201, Economics, The University of Manchester.
  2. A. Blasco & P. Pin & F. Sobbrio, 2011. "Paying Positive to Go Negative: Advertisers' Competition and Media Reports," Working Papers wp772, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
  3. Anderson, Simon P. & McLaren, John, 2010. "Media Mergers and Media Bias with Rational Consumers," CEPR Discussion Papers 7768, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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