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Competition and regulation of the advertising financed media platforms

Abstract : The first chapter of the thesis studies the advertising competition on the French broadcast TV market. We use a unique dataset on the French broadcast television market including audience, prices, and quantities of advertising of twenty-one TV channels from March 2008 to December 2013. We specify a structural model of oligopoly competition and identify the shape and magnitude of the feedback loop between TV viewers and advertisers. We also implement a simple procedure to identify the conduct of firms on the market. We find that the nature of competition in the French TV advertising market is of the Cournot type. Further, we provide empirical evidence that the price-cost margin is not a good indicator of the market power of firms operating on two-sided markets. In the second chapter, I use a theoretical model to analyze the competitive behavior of advertising financed media platforms. The platforms are specified to be horizontally differentiated and the market form is an oligopoly. The first major insight of the model is that the different platforms behave as strategic complements under Cournot competition. In particular, if a platform increases its quantity of advertising, it is optimal for its competitors to raise their respective advertising quantities as well. The model suggests that the merger of advertising sales houses of several platforms increases the advertising offers of all the competing platforms of the market (both the merged and unmerged), holding the quality of platforms unaffected. I further test the theoretical prediction with TV market data and model used in the first chapter, the empirical counterfactual simulation suggests same results as the theoretical model. Finally, in the last chapter, I investigate the welfare effect of the widespread policy of regulating advertising time on TV. The project exploits a novel dataset of per hour data on 12 broadcast TV channels in France during one year (2014). I first estimate the demand of TV viewers and of advertisers, which allows me to account for the two-sidedness of the market in the supply decision of TV stations. I show in this work how to identify the shadow prices of regulation when the regulatory constraints are observed. Finally, I conduct two counterfactual experiments to calibrate the welfare effects of the regulation. My results suggest that the regulation protects welfare of TV viewers, while its impact on the industry's profit can be either positive or negative, depending on the concentration level of the market. Given the two-sided market structure of the broadcast TV industry, regulating advertising time is unnecessary on a competitive market. However, when the market become concentrated, the regulation can improve up to 5.75% of consumer surplus, but decrease until 4.8% of the industry's profit. (...)
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  • HAL Id : tel-02425680, version 1


Jiekai Zhang. Competition and regulation of the advertising financed media platforms. Economics and Finance. Université Paris sciences et lettres, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017PSLEM049⟩. ⟨tel-02425680⟩



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