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The Production of Information in an Online World: Is Copy Right?

Author

Listed:
  • Julia Cage

    (Département d'économie)

  • Nicolas Hervé

    (Institut national de l'audiovisuel)

  • Marie-Luce Viaud

    (Institut national de l'audiovisuel)

Abstract

This paper documents the extent of copying and estimates the returns to originality in online news production. We build a unique dataset combining all the online content produced by the universe of news media (newspaper, television, radio, pure online media, and a news agency) in France during the year 2013 with new micro audience data. We develop a topic detection algorithm that identifies each news event, trace the timeline of each story and study news propagation. We show that one quarter of the news stories are reproduced online in less than 4 minutes. High reactivity comes with verbatim copying. We find that only 32.6% of the online content is original. The negative impact of copying on newsgathering incentives might however be counterbalanced by reputation effects. By using media-level daily audience and article-level Facebook shares, we show that original content represents 57.8% of online news consumption. Reputation mechanisms actually appear to solve about 40% of the copyright violation problem.

Suggested Citation

  • Julia Cage & Nicolas Hervé & Marie-Luce Viaud, 2017. "The Production of Information in an Online World: Is Copy Right?," Sciences Po publications DP12066, Sciences Po.
  • Handle: RePEc:spo:wpmain:info:hdl:2441/38tbdqmgvf8f9amamb132hea9b
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Inés Moreno de Barreda & Gilat Levy & Ronny Razin, 2017. "Persuasion with Correlation Neglect: Media Power via Correlation of News Content," Economics Series Working Papers 836, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    2. Kennedy, Patrick & Prat, Andrea, 2017. "Where Do People Get Their News?," CEPR Discussion Papers 12426, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Copyright; Facebook; Information spreading; Internet; Investigative journalism; Reputation;

    JEL classification:

    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L82 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Entertainment; Media
    • L86 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Information and Internet Services; Computer Software

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