The Price of Silence: Media Competition, Capture, and Electoral Accountability

Posted: 29 Apr 2018 Last revised: 6 Aug 2021

See all articles by Federico Trombetta

Federico Trombetta

DISEIS, Faculty of Political and Social Sciences, Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Domenico Rossignoli

DISEIS & CSCC, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Date Written: January 09, 2021

Abstract

Is competition in the mass media market an effective deterrent against media capture? Does it prevent political groups from influencing reporting? This paper shows that in some cases it does not. Building on the literature on media capture, the model highlights that, under fairly generic assumptions, high competition in the media market can drive the cost of media capture to zero, making capture easier. Moreover, it highlights conditions on the parameters where the effect of competition on capture is non-monotonic, i.e. capture may occur for levels of competition lower, but also higher, than those leading to media freedom.

Keywords: Political Agency, Mass Media, Competition, Media Capture

JEL Classification: D72, D73, D78, L82

Suggested Citation

Trombetta, Federico and Rossignoli, Domenico, The Price of Silence: Media Competition, Capture, and Electoral Accountability (January 09, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3160596 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3160596

Federico Trombetta (Contact Author)

DISEIS, Faculty of Political and Social Sciences, Universita' Cattolica del Sacro Cuore ( email )

Largo Gemelli
1
Milano, Milano 20123
Italy

Domenico Rossignoli

DISEIS & CSCC, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore ( email )

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