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Public Service Broadcasting of Sport, Shows, and News to Mitigate Rational Ignorance

  • Julia Rothbauer
  • Gernot Sieg

Rational individuals may use a tax or license-fee financed public service TV channel to mitigate the paradox of rational ignorance. The approach presented in this article assumes that increased consumption of information by voters improves democratic decisions, but marginal returns decrease. Depending on how fast marginal returns decrease, the public service TV channel broadcasts either only (unbiased serious) news or, to induce voters to watch the informational content, sports and shows (entertainment) as well.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1080/08997764.2012.755985
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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Media Economics.

Volume (Year): 26 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 21-40

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Handle: RePEc:taf:jmedec:v:26:y:2013:i:1:p:21-40
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  1. David Dreyer Lassen, 2004. "The Effect of Information on Voter Turnout: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," EPRU Working Paper Series 04-03, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
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  8. Mark Armstrong, 2005. "Public service broadcasting," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 26(3), pages 281-299, September.
  9. Harry Arne Solberg, 2007. "COMMENTARY: Sports Broadcasting: Is it a Job for Public Service Broadcasters?-A Welfare Economic Perspective," Journal of Media Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(4), pages 289-309.
  10. Matthew Gentzkow, 2006. "Television and Voter Turnout," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(3), pages 931-972, 08.
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  13. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "The Market for News," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1031-1053, September.
  14. Mark Armstrong & Helen Weeds, 2005. "Public Service Broadcasting in the Digital World," Industrial Organization 0507010, EconWPA.
  15. Wittman, Donald, 1989. "Why Democracies Produce Efficient Results," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1395-1424, December.
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