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Lost on the web: Does web distribution stimulate or depress television viewing?

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  • Waldfogel, Joel

Abstract

In the past few years, YouTube and other sites for sharing video files over the Internet have vaulted from obscurity to places of centrality in the media landscape. The files available at YouTube include a mix of user-generated video and clips from network television shows. Networks fear that availability of their clips on YouTube will depress television viewing. But unauthorized clips are also free advertising for television shows. As YouTube has grown quickly, major networks have responded by making their content available at their own sites. This paper examines the effects of authorized and unauthorized web distribution on television viewing between 2005 and 2007 using a survey of Penn students on their tendencies to watch television series on television as well as on the web. The results provide a glimpse of the way young, Internet-connected people use YouTube and related sites. While I find some evidence of substitution of web viewing for conventional television viewing, time spent on viewing programming on the web - 6.8Â h per week - far exceeds the reduction in weekly traditional television viewing of about 7Â min. Perhaps more important, overall time spent on network-controlled viewing (television plus network web sites) increased by 3.7Â h per week.

Suggested Citation

  • Waldfogel, Joel, 2009. "Lost on the web: Does web distribution stimulate or depress television viewing?," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 158-168, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:iepoli:v:21:y:2009:i:2:p:158-168
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    Cited by:

    1. Bourreau, Marc & Doğan, Pınar & Hong, Sounman, 2015. "Making money by giving it for free: Radiohead’s pre-release strategy for In Rainbows," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 77-93.
    2. Raphaël Suire & Thierry Pénard & Sylvain Dejean, 2010. "La gratuité est-elle une fatalité sur les marchés numériques ? Une étude sur le consentement à payer pour des offres de contenus audiovisuels sur internet," Économie et Prévision, Programme National Persée, vol. 194(3), pages 15-32.
    3. Brett Danaher & Michael D. Smith & Rahul Telang, 2014. "Piracy and Copyright Enforcement Mechanisms," Innovation Policy and the Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 25-61.
    4. Krawczyk, Michał & Tyrowicz, Joanna & Kukla-Gryz, Anna & Hardy, Wojciech, 2015. "“Piracy is not theft!” Is it just students who think so?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 32-39.
    5. repec:aea:jecper:v:31:y:2017:i:3:p:195-214 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Joëlle Farchy & Mathilde Gansemer & Jessica Petrou, 2013. "E-book and book publishing," Chapters,in: Handbook on the Digital Creative Economy, chapter 31, pages 353-364 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    7. Kolko, Jed, 2010. "How broadband changes online and offline behaviors," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 144-152, May.
    8. George Lisa M, 2008. "The Internet and the Market for Daily Newspapers," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-33, July.
    9. Brett Danaher & Samita Dhanasobhon & Michael D. Smith & Rahul Telang, 2010. "Converting Pirates Without Cannibalizing Purchasers: The Impact of Digital Distribution on Physical Sales and Internet Piracy," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(6), pages 1138-1151, 11-12.
    10. Trevor Roycroft, 2013. "Empirical study of broadband adoption using data from the 2009 Residential Energy Consumption Survey," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 43(2), pages 214-228, April.
    11. Wojciech Hardy & Michal Krawczyk & Joanna Tyrowicz, 2015. "Friends or foes? A meta-analysis of the link between "online piracy" and sales of cultural goods," Working Papers 2015-23, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    12. Scott Hiller, R., 2016. "Sales displacement and streaming music: Evidence from YouTube," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 16-26.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Video Web distribution Intellectual property Piracy;

    JEL classification:

    • L1 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance
    • L82 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Entertainment; Media

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