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

Abstract: 
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.
Affiliation: 
BYU
Date: 
September 20, 2018