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Measuring Consumer Preferences for Video Content Provision via Cord-Cutting Behavior


  • Jeffrey T. Prince

    (Department of Business Economics and Public Policy, Indiana University Kelley School of Business)

  • Shane Greenstein

    (Department of Management and Strategy, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University)


The television industry is undergoing a generational shift in structure; however, many demand-side determinants are still not well understood. We model how consumers choose video content provision among: over-the-air (OTA), paid subscription to cable or satellite, and online streaming (also known as over-the-top, or OTT). We apply our model to a U.S. dataset encompassing both the digital switchover for OTA and the emergence of OTT, along with a recession, and use it to analyze cord-cutting behavior (i.e., dropping of cable/satellite subscriptions). We find high levels of cord cutting during this time, and evidence that it became relatively more prevalent among low-income and younger households – suggesting this group responded to changes in OTA and streaming options. We find little evidence of households weighing relative content offerings/quality when choosing their means of video provision during the timespan of our data. This last finding has important ramifications for strategic interaction between content providers.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffrey T. Prince & Shane Greenstein, 2013. "Measuring Consumer Preferences for Video Content Provision via Cord-Cutting Behavior," Working Papers 2013-09, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:iuk:wpaper:2013-09

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    More about this item


    Telecommunications; Cord-cutting; video; digital switchover; online streaming; content;

    JEL classification:

    • L96 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Telecommunications

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