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When is Reputation Bad?

Author

Listed:
  • Jeffery Ely
  • Drew Fudenberg
  • David Levine

Abstract

In traditional reputation models, the ability to build a reputation is good for the long-run player. In [Ely, J., Valimaki, J., 2003. Bad reputation. NAJ Econ. 4, 2; http://www.najecon.org/v4.htm. Quart. J. Econ. 118 (2003) 785–814], Ely and Valimaki give an example in which reputation is unambiguously bad. This paper characterizes a class of games in which that insight holds. The key to bad reputation is that participation is optional for the short-run players, and that every action of the long-run player that makes the short-run players want to participate has a chance of being interpreted as a signal that the long-run player is “bad.†We allow a broad set of commitment types, allowing many types, including the “Stackelberg type†used to prove positive results on reputation. Although reputation need not be bad if the probability of the Stackelberg type is too high, the relative probability of the Stackelberg type can be high when all commitment types are unlikely.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffery Ely & Drew Fudenberg & David Levine, 2002. "When is Reputation Bad?," Discussion Papers 1358, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  • Handle: RePEc:nwu:cmsems:1358
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Schmidt, Klaus M, 1993. "Reputation and Equilibrium Characterization in Repeated Games with Conflicting Interests," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(2), pages 325-351, March.
    2. George J. Mailath & Larry Samuelson, "undated". ""Your Reputation Is Who You're Not, Not Who You'd Like To Be''," CARESS Working Papres 98-11, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
    3. George J. Mailath & Larry Samuelson, 2001. "Who Wants a Good Reputation?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 68(2), pages 415-441.
    4. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 2008. "Maintaining a Reputation when Strategies are Imperfectly Observed," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine (ed.), A Long-Run Collaboration On Long-Run Games, chapter 8, pages 143-161, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    5. Jeffrey C. Ely & Juuso Välimäki, 2003. "Bad Reputation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(3), pages 785-814.
    6. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 2008. "Efficiency and Observability with Long-Run and Short-Run Players," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine (ed.), A Long-Run Collaboration On Long-Run Games, chapter 13, pages 275-307, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    7. Kreps, David M. & Wilson, Robert, 1982. "Reputation and imperfect information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 253-279, August.
    8. Drew Fudenberg & David M. Kreps & Eric S. Maskin, 1990. "Repeated Games with Long-run and Short-run Players," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 57(4), pages 555-573.
    9. Drew Fudenberg & David M. Kreps, 1987. "Reputation in the Simultaneous Play of Multiple Opponents," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(4), pages 541-568.
    10. Drew Fudenberg & David Levine & Eric Maskin, 2008. "The Folk Theorem With Imperfect Public Information," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine (ed.), A Long-Run Collaboration On Long-Run Games, chapter 12, pages 231-273, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    11. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1982. "Predation, reputation, and entry deterrence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 280-312, August.
    12. Marco Celentani & Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1996. "Maintaining a Reputation against a Patient Opponent," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2015, David K. Levine.
    13. Stephen Morris, 2001. "Political Correctness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(2), pages 231-265, April.
    14. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 2008. "Reputation And Equilibrium Selection In Games With A Patient Player," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine (ed.), A Long-Run Collaboration On Long-Run Games, chapter 7, pages 123-142, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    15. Marco Celentani & Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 2008. "Maintaining A Reputation Against A Long-Lived Opponent," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine (ed.), A Long-Run Collaboration On Long-Run Games, chapter 9, pages 163-176, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    16. Sorin, Sylvain, 1999. "Merging, Reputation, and Repeated Games with Incomplete Information," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 29(1-2), pages 274-308, October.
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