TV Channels, Self Control and Happiness
Institute for Empirical Research in Economics Working Paper No. 301
22 Pages Posted: 29 Aug 2006
Date Written: July 2006
In many countries, TV viewers have access to more and more TV channels. We study whether people can cope with this and watch the amount of TV they find optimal for themselves or whether they are prone to over-consumption. We find that heavy TV viewers do not benefit, but instead report lower life satisfaction when exposed to more TV channels. This finding runs counter to the standard economic prediction that a larger choice set does not make people worse off. It suggests that an identifiable group of persons experience a self-control problem when it comes to TV viewing.
Keywords: Self-control, over-consumption, life satisfaction, experienced utility, TV viewing
JEL Classification: D12, D91, I31, J22
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation