2018-09-20 - Scott Grimshaw - Going Viral, Binge Watching, and Attention Cannibalism

Since digital entertainment is often described as viral this paper uses the vocabulary and statistical methods for diseases to analyze viewer data from an experiment at BYUtv where a program's premiere was exclusively digital. Onset time, the days from the program premiere to a viewer watching the first episode, is modeled using a changepoint between epidemic viewing with a non-constant hazard rate and endemic viewing with a constant hazard rate. Finish time, the days from onset to a viewer watching all episodes, uses an expanded negative binomial hurdle model to reflect the characteristics of binge watching. The hurdle component models binge racing where a viewer watches all episodes on the same day as onset. One reason binge watching appeals to viewers is that they can focus attention on a single program's story line and characters before moving on to a second program. This translates to a competing risks model that has an impact on scheduling digital premieres. Attention cannibalism occurs when a viewer takes a long time watching their first choice program and then never watches a second program or delays watching the second program until much later. Scheduling a difference in premieres reduces attention cannibalism.
September 20, 2018