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Public service broadcasting of sport, shows, and news as economic solution to the voter's paradox of rational ignorance

  • Rothbauer, Julia
  • Sieg, Gernot

Rational individuals may use a Public Service TV channel as a welfare improving institution to solve the paradox of being uninformed. To induce voters to watch unbiased serious informational content the Public Service TV channel is not only broadcasting (unbiased serious) news but also sport and shows even though in many markets sport and shows are broadcasted by private TV channels. Our approach is based on two-sided markets and the assumption of decreasing marginal returns of the factor information in the production process of democratic decisions.

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Paper provided by Technische Universität Braunschweig, Economics Department in its series Economics Department Working Paper Series with number 9.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:tbswps:9
Contact details of provider: Postal: Pockelsstr. 14, D-38106 Braunschweig
Web page: https://www.tu-braunschweig.de/vwl

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  1. 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.
  2. Matsusaka, John G & Palda, Filip, 1999. " Voter Turnout: How Much Can We Explain?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 98(3-4), pages 431-46, March.
  3. Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2008. "Competition and Truth in the Market for News," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(2), pages 133-154, Spring.
  4. Wittman, Donald, 1989. "Why Democracies Produce Efficient Results," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(6), pages 1395-1424, December.
  5. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Media Bias," NBER Working Papers 9295, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. David Dreyer Lassen, 2004. "The Effect of Information on Voter Turnout: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," EPRU Working Paper Series 04-03, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  7. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135.
  8. Simeon Djankov & Caralee McLiesh & Tatiana Nenova & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Who Owns the Media?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1919, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  9. Mark Armstrong, 2005. "Public service broadcasting," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 26(3), pages 281-299, September.
  10. Prat, Andrea & Strömberg, David, 2005. "Commercial Television and Voter Information," CEPR Discussion Papers 4989, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. " Explaining Voter Turnout Patterns: An Information Theory," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 84(1-2), pages 91-117, July.
  12. Bryan Caplan, 2002. "Systematically Biased Beliefs About Economics: Robust Evidence of Judgemental Anomalies from the Survey of Americans and Economists on the Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(479), pages 433-458, April.
  13. Matthew Gentzkow, 2006. "Television and Voter Turnout," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(3), pages 931-972, 08.
  14. Harry Arne Solberg, 2007. "COMMENTARY: Sports Broadcasting: Is it a Job for Public Service Broadcasters?-A Welfare Economic Perspective," Journal of Media Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(4), pages 289-309.
  15. Mark Armstrong & Helen Weeds, 2005. "Public Service Broadcasting in the Digital World," Industrial Organization 0507010, EconWPA.
  16. Massimo Motta & Michele Polo, 1997. "Concentration and public policies in the broadcasting industry: the future of television," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 12(25), pages 293-334, October.
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