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Program substitutability in network television: Evidence from Argentina

  • Carare, Octavian
  • Zentner, Alejandro
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    Inference about television program substitutability from the consumer perspective is complicated by unobserved shocks to viewership and endogenous programming choices by television networks. High-frequency changes in program scheduling are commonplace in Argentina. This paper uses this variation in program scheduling as an instrumental variable in order to measure the degree of substitution across the programs broadcast by the five network television stations in a large Argentinean market. In line with the results of prior studies, the results of this paper show evidence of substantial business stealing in network television: increases in the ratings of a station primarily decrease the ratings of other stations. However, the estimates also show that the increases in ratings attributable to new viewers entering the market range between 3 and 5 percentage points for each 10-point increase in a channel’s viewership. The size of this market expansion effect is significantly larger than that found by prior studies.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Information Economics and Policy.

    Volume (Year): 24 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 145-160

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:iepoli:v:24:y:2012:i:2:p:145-160
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505549

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    1. Cancian, Maria & Bills, Angela & Bergstrom, Theodore, 1995. "Hotelling Location Problems with Directional Constraints: An Application to Television News Scheduling," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(1), pages 121-24, March.
    2. Kenneth C. Wilbur, 2008. "A Two-Sided, Empirical Model of Television Advertising and Viewing Markets," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 27(3), pages 356-378, 05-06.
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    4. Steven Berry & Joel Waldfogel, 1996. "Free Entry and Social Inefficiency in Radio Broadcasting," NBER Working Papers 5528, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. GABSZEWICZ, Jean J. & LAUSSEL, Didier & SONNAC, Nathalie, . "Programming and advertising competition in the broadcasting industry," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1873, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    6. Beebe, Jack H, 1977. "Institutional Structure and Program Choices in Television Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 15-37, February.
    7. Berry, Steven T. & Waldfogel, Joel, 1999. "Public radio in the United States: does it correct market failure or cannibalize commercial stations?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 189-211, February.
    8. George, Lisa, 2007. "What's fit to print: The effect of ownership concentration on product variety in daily newspaper markets," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(3-4), pages 285-303, October.
    9. Steven T. Berry & Joel Waldfogel, 2001. "Do Mergers Increase Product Variety? Evidence From Radio Broadcasting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(3), pages 1009-1025, August.
    10. Spence, A Michael & Owen, Bruce, 1977. "Television Programming, Monopolistic Competition, and Welfare," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 103-26, February.
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