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On the Edge of Your Seat: Demand for Football on Television and the Uncertainty of Outcome Hypothesis

Author

Listed:
  • Kevin Alavy

    () (futures sports + entertainment)

  • Alison Gaskell

    (futures sports + entertainment)

  • Stephanie Leach

    () (Imperial College London, South Kensington campus)

  • Stefan Szymanski

    () (City University London)

Abstract

This paper examines the relationship between the demand for English football on television and outcome uncertainty. It tests the uncertainty of outcome hypothesis by using minute-by-minute television viewership figures which avoids the problems encountered when estimating demand using match attendance. We find that although uncertainty matters, it is the progression of the match which drives viewership and as a draw looks increasingly likely, viewers are likely to switch channels. Games that end in victories have a higher average viewership than games that end in stalemates.

Suggested Citation

  • Kevin Alavy & Alison Gaskell & Stephanie Leach & Stefan Szymanski, 2010. "On the Edge of Your Seat: Demand for Football on Television and the Uncertainty of Outcome Hypothesis," International Journal of Sport Finance, Fitness Information Technology, vol. 5(2), pages 75-95, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:jsf:intjsf:v:5:y:2010:i:2:p:75-95
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    Cited by:

    1. Luc Arrondel & Richard Duhautois, 2019. "Are French Football Fans Sensitive to Outcome Uncertainty?," Economie et Statistique / Economics and Statistics, Institut National de la Statistique et des Études Économiques (INSEE), issue 513, pages 5-26.
    2. Schreyer, Dominik & Schmidt, Sascha L. & Torgler, Benno, 2016. "Against all odds? Exploring the role of game outcome uncertainty in season ticket holders’ stadium attendance demand," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 192-217.
    3. Sung, Hojun & Mills, Brian M., 2018. "Estimation of game-level attendance in major league soccer: Outcome uncertainty and absolute quality considerations," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(5), pages 519-532.
    4. Bizzozero, Paolo & Flepp, Raphael & Franck, Egon, 2016. "The importance of suspense and surprise in entertainment demand: Evidence from Wimbledon," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 47-63.
    5. Vincent (Vincent Peter) Hogan & Patrick Massey, 2020. "Professional Rugby on the Celtic Fringe," Working Papers 202003, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    6. Raul Caruso & Francesco Addesa & Marco Di Domizio, 2019. "The Determinants of the TV Demand for Soccer: Empirical Evidence on Italian Serie A for the Period 2008-2015," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 20(1), pages 25-49, January.
    7. Buraimo, Babatunde & Simmons, Rob, 2009. "A tale of two audiences: Spectators, television viewers and outcome uncertainty in Spanish football," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 61(4), pages 326-338, July.
    8. Wladimir Andreff & Gaël Raballand, 2011. "Is European Football’s Future to Become a Boring Game?," Chapters, in: Wladimir Andreff (ed.), Contemporary Issues in Sports Economics, chapter 8, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Babatunde Buraimo & David Forrest & Ian G. McHale & J.D. Tena, 2020. "Armchair Fans: New Insights Into The Demand For Televised Soccer," Working Papers 202020, University of Liverpool, Department of Economics.
    10. Petr A. Parshakov & Kseniya O. Baydina, 2017. "Brands or Uncertainty? An Empirical Test of the Uncertainty of Outcome Hypothesis in Russian Football," HSE Working papers WP BRP 163/EC/2017, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    11. Scarf, Phil & Parma, Rishikesh & McHale, Ian, 2019. "On outcome uncertainty and scoring rates in sport: The case of international rugby union," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 273(2), pages 721-730.
    12. Babatunde Buraimo, 2014. "Spectator demand and attendances in English league football," Chapters, in: John Goddard & Peter Sloane (ed.), Handbook on the Economics of Professional Football, chapter 4, pages 60-72, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    13. Dominik Schreyer & Sascha L. Schmidt & Benno Torgler, 2018. "Game Outcome Uncertainty and Television Audience Demand: New Evidence from German Football," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 19(2), pages 140-161, May.
    14. Paul Downward, 2014. "English professional football," Chapters, in: John Goddard & Peter Sloane (ed.), Handbook on the Economics of Professional Football, chapter 17, pages 277-297, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    15. Jigyu Chung & Young Hoon Lee & Joon-Ho Kang, 2016. "Ex Ante and Ex Post Expectations of Outcome Uncertainty and Baseball Television Viewership," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 17(8), pages 790-812, December.
    16. Tainsky, Scott & Kerwin, Shannon & Xu, Jie & Zhou, Yilun, 2014. "Will the real fans please remain seated? Gender and television ratings for pre-game and game broadcasts," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 190-204.
    17. Sung, Hojun & Mills, Brian M. & Tainsky, Scott, 2017. "From schadenfreude to mitfreude? Estimating viewership loss and rivalrous relationships in otherwise neutral markets," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 159-169.
    18. Wladimir Andreff (ed.), 2011. "Contemporary Issues in Sports Economics," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 14146.
    19. Brown, Katie M. & Salaga, Steven, 2018. "NCAA football television viewership: Product quality and consumer preference relative to market expectations," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 377-390.
    20. Raul Caruso & Marco Di Domizio, 2015. "La Serie A In Televisione E Allo Stadio: Presentazione Del Dataset Audiball 1.0," Rivista di Diritto ed Economia dello Sport, Centro di diritto e business dello Sport, vol. 11(1), pages 161-185, maggio.
    21. Scott D. Grimshaw & Jeffrey S. Larson, 2021. "Effect of Star Power on NBA All-Star Game TV Audience," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 22(2), pages 139-163, February.
    22. Marco Di Domizio, 2013. "Football on TV: an empirical analysis on the italian couch potato attitudes [Fútbol en la televisión: un análisis empírico sobre las actitudes coach potato de los italianos]," Papeles de Europa, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Instituto Complutense de Estudios Internacionales (ICEI), vol. 26(1), pages 26-45.
    23. Grimshaw Scott D. & Burwell Scott J., 2014. "Choosing the most popular NFL games in a local TV market," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 10(3), pages 1-15, September.
    24. Daam Van Reeth & Nikita Osokin, 2020. "The Impact of Hosting the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Differences in TV Viewership Between Seasoned Football Fans and Occasional Watchers of Football Games in Russia," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 21(3), pages 256-280, April.
    25. Grimshaw Scott D. & Sabin R. Paul & Willes Keith M., 2013. "Analysis of the NCAA Men’s Final Four TV audience," Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, De Gruyter, vol. 9(2), pages 115-126, June.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    sports; soccer; football; competitive balance; television;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism

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