72 research outputs found

    Trademarks, Product Variety, and Economic Activity in Italy and Europe

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    This paper studies the relationship between trademarks and economic activity. We compare the distribution of product classes across national, EU, and international trademarks deposited by Italian firms. In relation to EU trademarks, we analyze some characteristics of the deposits of major European countries. In particular, we compare "trademark specialization" to export specialization. A trademark is interpreted as a means to differentiate products, thus a greater number of trademarks deposited is associated with a higher degree of product differentiation. Our findings highlight that trademark protection "follows" quite closely the structure of the real economy, with some exceptions. Thus, those economic sectors where countries exhibit economic specialization also present a higher degree of product differentiation.Trademarks, Intellectual property rights, Specialization, Product variety

    The Max-Min Principle of Product Differentiation: An Experimental Analysis

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    Theoretical models of multidimensional product differentiation predict that in duopoly firms differentiate maximally along one dimension and minimally along the other dimensions. We experimentally reproduce a market in which firms can differentiate their products along two horizontal dimensions. The main result is that subjects do not differentiate their products and locate near the center consumers' distribution.-

    Social networking websites: who survives?

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    This article studies the relationship between the characteristics of social networking sites (SNSs) and their probability of survival. The data sample includes 224 SNSs launched throughout the world from 1995 to 2015 and that can be described by focus strategy, business financing methods and interactions with external companies, such as partnerships, mergers and acquisitions. Three factors are systematically associated with closure hazard rates. First, compared with SNSs that address a specialized audience, generalist SNSs have a three times higher probability of closing. Second, being the target of a merger or acquisition more than doubles the probability of closure. Third, new entrants have higher probability to survive if compared with SNSs with experience in the industry

    Social pluralism in public and private television broadcasting

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    This paper measures social pluralism in the most popular free-to-air TV groups in Italy (Rai, a state-controlled company, and Mediaset, owned by Berlusconi’s family) between 2008 and 2014. Media social pluralism is the ability of the mass media to describe and take into account the different categories of citizens in a society. The Italian Authority for Telecommunications regularly collects data on the airtime devoted to 22 “social actors” during newscasts. Our findings show that the public TV broadcaster shows a wider internal social pluralism than Mediaset. The data also reveal significant inter-group differences (external pluralism). The degree of internal and external pluralism decreased when Silvio Berlusconi served as Prime Minister

    Media coverage of large countries at the 2015 Milan EXPO

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    An inertial bias or status quo bias in media industries, as in other markets, means the perpetuation of a certain behaviour or attitude. If mass media frequently address certain issues, an inertial bias means that such issues will be treated again independently of their absolute or relative newsworthiness. This paper studies the inertial media bias in relation to the Milan Expo 2015, an event where, in theory, all participant countries ought to have been considered equal. The empirical analysis considers the articles and reports on the Expo of the two most important online Italian newspapers, Repubblica and Corriere della Sera between May and October 2015. The estimates show that the newspapers devoted more articles and words to the largest countries, while the slant towards the richest countries was less evident. In addition, the tone of the media reports regarding large and rich countries was more positive

    Who survives a recession? Specialization against diversification in the digital publishing industry

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    Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to study the empirical relationship between specialization, diversification and rate of survival in the digital publishing industry. The sample includes all publishing companies in Italy that produce electronic content and distribute it through internet platforms. Design/methodology/approach - The first part of the paper discusses the pros and cons of specialization against diversification, and applies the related economic theories to the digital publishing industry. The empirical work regarding the factors that affect firm survival is reviewed. The second part is empirical and analyzes the diversification strategies of 2,838 Italian digital editors between 1995 and 2014, and the impact of diversification on the probability of survival. Findings - On the whole, digital publishing companies that are also active in traditional print activities have been constantly declining. However, those who combine print and digital activities or operate other mass media businesses have a higher probability of surviving in the market. These findings hold controlling for firm size and market structure, before and after the economic crisis exploded in 2009, in different geographical areas and by different legal forms of publishing companies. Research limitations/implications - As the industry often presents country-specific characteristics, the econometric analysis should also be integrated with case studies that highlight particular survival conditions. Practical implications - The study provides mass media scholars as well as practitioners with detailed information on the digital publishing trends in the medium term. Originality/value - This research is significant because, in the period under review, many digital native entrepreneurs with scarce experience entered the industry, targeted digital native consumers/readers and challenged traditional and established media conglomerates

    I mass media digitali in Toscana e il pluralismo dell'offerta informativa locale

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    Questo lavoro tenta di chiarire alcuni questioni riguardanti il rapporto tra mass media digitali e pluralità dell'informazione, tenuto conto dell'importanza di tali elementi prima dopo e durante le consultazioni elettorali. La prima parte discute brevemente il rapporto tra cambiamento tecnologico e struttura di mercato.L’aspetto di maggior interesse è l’impatto della digitalizzazione dei contenuti sulla concentrazione del mercato. Da un lato infatti il crollo dei costi fissi di produzione sembrerebbe avvantaggiare i piccoli operatori (come quelli locali); dall’altro gli effetti di rete fanno prevalere la logica del ‘winner takes it all’. La seconda parte si concentra sull’informazione locale in Toscana, in primo luogo mostrando alcuni dati relativi ai due protagonisti della carta stampata, e sulla loro transizione verso un sistema digitale. Il caso è paradigmatico visto che ogni regione presenta frequentemente situazioni di monopolio o duopolio, in Italia come in altri paesi. I quotidiani locali naturalmente non rappresentano tutta l’informazione locale ma ne sono sicuramente i protagonisti. La terza parte offre alcune considerazioni partendo dai dati empirici relativi all’informazione online, compresi quelli del Corecom Toscana (l’agenzia decentrata dell’AgCom), mentre la quarta e ultima parte usa dati del Registro degli Operatori della Comunicazione(ROC) per effettuare un’analisi di sopravvivenza degli editori elettronici in Toscana

    The Extended Protection of Strong Trademarks

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    Economic investment in trademarks is not necessarily indicative of product quality, as trademark protection does not provide incentive for continuous product quality improvement. The authors begin their analysis by exploring the function of trademarks from the perspectives of traditional law and economics. Such an analysis points to a conflict between the legal and economic interpretation of the function of trademarks. Particularly, the authors suggest that the traditional economic perspective of trademarks fails to justify the legal existence of strong brands and their extensions. This argument is tested through the review of advertising, brand extension, and product quality literature. The authors conclude that a desire to protect high product quality does not explain an extended protection of strong trademarks, but extended protection can prevent welfare losses when product variety is considered important to consumers\u27 utility function
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