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Welfare effects of public service broadcasting in a free-to-air TV market

Rothbauer, Julia and Sieg, Gernot (2011): Welfare effects of public service broadcasting in a free-to-air TV market.

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Abstract

Viewer's private information consumption generates external benefits for society, because information improves the ability of voters to control politicians. Our study compares two settings in a free-to-air TV market: a differentiated duopoly of private channels and an oligopoly with both private channels and a public service broadcaster broadcasting information as well as entertainment programs. We find that welfare effects of public service broadcasting depend on its program design and cost efficiency, the external benefits of voter's information, and the magnitude of lost rents from the advertising market.

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