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The Effects of Introducing Advertising in Pay TV: A Model of Asymmetric Competition between Pay TV and Free TV

  • Helmut Dietl


    (Department of Business Administration, University of Zurich)

  • Markus Lang


    (Department of Business Administration, University of Zurich)

  • Panlang Lin


    (Department of Business Administration, University of Zurich)

This paper develops a theoretical model of asymmetric competition between a pay TV and a free TV broadcaster. Our model shows that the pay TV broadcaster has incentives to place advertising on its channel if the marginal return on advertising exceeds the viewers' disutility from advertising. In this case, however, the pay TV advertising level is always below the corresponding level on free TV. The pay TV advertising level can increase with a higher viewer disutility from advertising but the pay TV channel will never attract a larger viewership than the free TV channel. Furthermore, we show that introducing advertising on pay TV induces a decrease of the subscription fees on this channel and a decrease in the advertising level of the free TV channel. Moreover, pay TV viewer demand can increase if the pay TV broadcaster places advertising on its channel. If the viewer disutility of advertising is sufficiently large, aggregate broadcaster profits increase through the introduction of advertising in pay TV, while aggregate consumer surplus always increases.

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Paper provided by University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU) in its series Working Papers with number 0153.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iso:wpaper:0153
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  1. Esther Gal-Or & Anthony Dukes, 2003. "Minimum Differentiation in Commercial Media Markets," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 291-325, 09.
  2. Gabszewicz, Jean J. & Laussel, Dider & Sonnac, Nathalie, 2001. "Press advertising and the ascent of the 'Pensee Unique'," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 641-651, May.
  3. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2014. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," CPI Journal, Competition Policy International, vol. 10.
  4. Peitz, Martin & Valletti, Tommaso, 2004. "Content and Advertising in the Media: Pay-TV versus Free-To-Air," CEPR Discussion Papers 4771, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Triole, 2002. "Platform competition in two sided markets," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24929, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  6. Simon P. Anderson & Oystein Foros & Hans Jarle Kind, 2010. "Hotelling Competition with Multi-Purchasing: Time Magazine, Newsweek, or both?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3096, CESifo Group Munich.
  7. Hans Jarle Kind & Tore Nilssen & Lars Sørgard, 2009. "Business Models for Media Firms: Does Competition Matter for how they Raise Revenue?," CESifo Working Paper Series 2713, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Gabszewicz, Jean J & Laussel, Didier & Sonnac, Nathalie, 2002. " Press Advertising and the Political Differentiation of Newspapers," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 4(3), pages 317-34.
  9. 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).
  10. Claude Crampes & Carole Haritchabalet & Bruno Jullien, 2005. "Advertising, Competition and Entry in Media Industries," CESifo Working Paper Series 1591, CESifo Group Munich.
  11. Caillaud, Bernard & Jullien, Bruno, 2003. " Chicken & Egg: Competition among Intermediation Service Providers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(2), pages 309-28, Summer.
  12. Kaiser, Ulrich & Song, Minjae, 2009. "Do media consumers really dislike advertising? An empirical assessment of the role of advertising in print media markets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 292-301, March.
  13. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:12:y:2007:i:7:p:1-8 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Mark Armstrong, 2005. "Public service broadcasting," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 26(3), pages 281-299, September.
  15. E. Glen Weyl, 2010. "A Price Theory of Multi-sided Platforms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1642-72, September.
  16. Alexander Rasch, 2007. "Platform competition with partial multihoming under differentiation: a note," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 12(7), pages 1-8.
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