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Credibility for Sale: the Effect of Disclosure on Information Acquisition and Transmission

We study the effect of disclosure on information acquisition and transmission in a dynamic reputation model. In each period, to make a report to a client, an expert chooses between conducting a costly investigation or channeling a message from an interest group. We show that not disclosing the source of the expert's report may increase the frequency of investigation by the expert. Nevertheless, it decreases the quality of the clients' decisions. We demonstrate that, however, when the importance of decisions vary across time, when the interest groups are long-lived, or when the expert's clientele is growing in her reputation, nondisclosure may improve the quality of the clients' decisions.

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Paper provided by Concordia University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 09008.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2009
Date of revision: Oct 2009
Handle: RePEc:crd:wpaper:09008
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  1. Anderson, Simon P & McLaren, John, 2010. "Media Mergers and Media Bias with Rational Consumers," CEPR Discussion Papers 7768, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Paul Milgrom & John Roberts, 1980. "Predation, Reputation, and Entry Deterrence," Discussion Papers 427, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. Ottaviani, Marco & Sorensen, Peter Norman, 2006. "Professional advice," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 120-142, January.
  4. Beatriz Mariano, 2008. "Do Reputational Concerns Lead to Reliable Ratings?," FMG Discussion Papers dp613, Financial Markets Group.
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  8. 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.
  9. Wei Li, 2007. "Changing One's Mind when the Facts Change: Incentives of Experts and the Design of Reporting Protocols," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(4), pages 1175-1194.
  10. In-Uck Park, 2005. "Cheap-Talk Referrals of Differentiated Experts in Repeated Relationships," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(2), pages 391-411, Summer.
  11. Christopher Phelan, 2001. "Public trust and government betrayal," Staff Report 283, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  12. Stephen Morris, 2001. "Political Correctness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 231-265, April.
  13. Martin W. Cripps & George J. Mailath & Larry Samuelson, 2004. "Imperfect Monitoring and Impermanent Reputations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(2), pages 407-432, 03.
  14. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "The Market for News," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1031-1053, September.
  15. Anderson, Simon P. & Gabszewicz, Jean J., 2006. "The Media and Advertising: A Tale of Two-Sided Markets," Handbook of the Economics of Art and Culture, Elsevier.
  16. Victor Ginsburgh & David Throsby, 2006. "Handbook of the Eonomics of Art and Culture," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/152412, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  17. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," IDEI Working Papers 37, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
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  19. Choi, Jay Pil, 2006. "Broadcast competition and advertising with free entry: Subscription vs. free-to-air," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 181-196, June.
  20. Sobel, Joel, 1985. "A Theory of Credibility," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 557-73, October.
  21. Wrasai, Phongthorn & Swank, Otto H., 2007. "Policy makers, advisers, and reputation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 62(4), pages 579-590, April.
  22. Benabou, R. & Laroque, G., 1989. "Using Privileged Information To Manipulate Markets: Insiders, Gurus, And Credibility," Working papers 513, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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  24. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Media Bias," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1981, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  25. 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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  27. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:668-691 is not listed on IDEAS
  28. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:645-667 is not listed on IDEAS
  29. Jeong-Yoo Kim, 1996. "Cheap Talk and Reputation in Repeated Pretrial Negotiation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(4), pages 787-802, Winter.
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  31. Bourjade, Sylvain & Jullien, Bruno, 2004. "Expertise and Bias in Decision Making," MPRA Paper 7251, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jan 2007.
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