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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. 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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  4. Timothy Besley & Andrea Prat, 2006. "Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 720-736, June.
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  8. 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.
  9. Philippe Aghion & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Normal and Real Authority in Organizations," Working papers 94-13, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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  12. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Media Bias," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1981, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  16. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:668-691 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Stephen Morris, 2001. "Political Correctness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 231-265, April.
  18. 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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  25. 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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  29. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:645-667 is not listed on IDEAS
  30. 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.
  31. 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.
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