The economics of presence

Or why movie stars and singers decrease in value if they are too present in the media and why Angelina Jolie is overvalued.

Within the field of economics in general, I have two passions: One is for everything that is related to finance, the other is macroeconomics. This post, even though it might not seem obvious at first, is about the latter.

Today I want to talk about fame as a derivative. Imagine that the worth of fame would increase or decrease in relation to the demand for the underlying, the actor or singer, by the respective audience. Now imagine that when a studio hires a star, they pay a portion for the performance of the person but in fact the majority is being paid for derivative value, the actors fame. Hence the higher the demand for the actor, the bigger his fame and therefore the bigger the current market price of the actor.

If offer exists in the market and keeps on being existing than naturally there also has to be demand, the question is what do the consumers demand – the actors fame or his persona? This question is quite interesting and can be discussed on different layers; this blog author however believes that there is no demand for the persona but in fact only for the public image of the actor represented in his fame. Every consumer has a certain demand for other peoples fame but more importantly every consumer has a demand for the fame of a specific person (e.g. fandom). The consumption of fame can happen through various medias, it is not mandatory that fame is consumed through the key media of the famous person (for an actor – movies; for a singer – music). Now let us come to my controversial theory:

The more an actor will appear in the media for instance due to gossip that surrounds him or her, the higher will be the extent the consumer will be exposed to the actors or singers fame (his public image). That will result in a saturation of consumers demand for the celebrity, decrease of the marginal value of another unit of output of the actor which will inevitably lead to an unwillingness to spend 9 € for a movie ticket to consume the actor once more. Consumption of an actor, or rather his fame, doesn’t necessarily have to happen through movies, the more he is present in every day medias such as the internet or news, the stronger the shift in consumption from movies to the mentioned media, the weaker the sales for a movie. Why should you pay to see an actor in a movie if you can also consume him on the news, or gossip pages on the web?

Examples? Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck – during their relationship a media shift happened from their core businesses, music and acting, to gossip pages and news coverage. A result was that the need for both of them was saturated. Their careers have yet to recover. Other examples: Tom Cruise and very soon Angelina Jolie too (however her value has now become a derivative of Brad Pitts value and Brad Pitt is not going anywhere in the near future), David Beckham, Collin Farrell.

More to come very soon.



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German ridicule for UK policies

I found this article on the BBC website.



‘Debt generation’

Criticising the UK government’s decision to cut VAT from 17.5% to 15%, Mr Steinbruck questioned how effective this will be.

“Are you really going to buy a DVD player because it now costs £39.10 instead of £39.90?” he said.

“All this will do is raise Britain’s debt to a level that will take a whole generation to work off.”

Saying the UK government was now “tossing around billions”, Mr Steinbruck questioned why Britain was now closely following the high public spending model put forward by 20th Century economist John Maynard Keynes.

“The switch from decades of supply-side politics all the way to a crass Keynesianism is breathtaking,” he said.

“When I ask about the origins of the [financial] crisis, economists I respect tell me it is the credit-financed growth of recent years and decades.

“Isn’t this the same mistake everyone is suddenly making again, under all the public pressure?”


I think Mr. Steinbrück is making  some very good points here. First of all the Brits departure from their lassez faire, deregulating approach (that I generally approve of) to a heavy state intervention (that I heavily disapprove of) is ridiculous.  Secondly this kind of deficit spending is quite comparable to what happened in Britain over the last few years: You got one credit card in order to pay off the momentary debt, whereas you don’t realize that by doing so you accumulate an even bigger amount of debt that you have to pay off later. This principle works of course until there is no more credit card company willing to hand out new debt to you.

Britain didn’t really use its period of solid growth to re balance their budget – admittedly it is quite hard to get in balance if all your growth stems from encumberance in the first place.

My two cents : I am just a small timer in the big economist game, but I know exactly what is going to happen because I’ve been there, done that: You are partying and drinking like a sailor on shore leave and feel the effects of your excessive alcohol consumption the next morning. Because that nasty hangover stings like a bitch you have another drink, since more alcohol will ease the pain. However you are in for a surprise the same night, when you realize that the hangover has come back and this time it brought friends! We’re in for some happy-go-lucky times.

You see what I am getting at? Tossing around big bucks right now will just strain the coming generation (in other words: us!) later.

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3 Blogs in 3 Minutes! The Octagon Buzz

Who looks like a member of a Gay Parade but hits on you a houndred times harder? That’s right, it has to be a MMA fighter!




Essential Facts about the People represented in this blog (formerly known as Who?) -MMA fighters are people who engange in ultra violent (but in a good way) and highly technical so called Mixed Martial Arts. MMA is a combination of different types of martial arts and thus it is much more diverese than simple boxing. The disciplines within this sport are grappling (that is ground fighting), hitting and kicking. MMA is very open therefore people from all kinds of martial arts backgrounds enter the sport and adapt their style – though over the years wrestlers and Brazilian ju jitsu fighters have proven most successful.

What? -The Octagon Buzz (named after the octagonal shape of the cage the fights are held in) gives detailed reports on MMAs biggest league the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) but does not neglect other leagues such as XTC or the Fury FC. There is a lot a lot of background info on fighters and events as well as videos and photos. In addition to that, the authors of the blog have a close look at all the big and small fights and tell you what they liked or dislike and which MMA fighter has the best technique!

Why should I have a look at it? -MMA has been growing vigorously over the past few years in terms of Pay-Per-View subscriptions while other sports, namely boxing… actually only boxing, have kept on losing ground. Let’s face it, MMA is the new hot thing around. No other sport has more fresh talents coming in rattling cages of the established athletes, no other sport combines blunt force trauma with incredible technique so well and no other sport provides the viewer with so much drama in and outside the ring. That is of course only if you exclude Wrestling from your list of real sports.

My personal upshot! -A series of very bad word plays: This site hits the fan! You will be completely hooked on. Wow this blog total swings! It beats the living daylights out of other sport blogs! Those guys really kick it off! Alright I will end this now, oK … ohhh!

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3 Blogs in 3 Minutes! First off: Michael Totten

Would you trust this man your War on Terror?

Who? -Michael J. Totten is an American independent journalist who travels to places normal people probably wouldn’t go to.  His track record contains such hostile places as Iraq (Baghdad, Anbar Province etc…), Afghanistan, Gaza and Westbank and to a lesser degree Kosovo. He has been awarded with the prestigious “Blogger of the Year” Award in 2006 and his blog was voted the best for Africa and the Middle East in 2007. Moreover his work has also been published in the New York Times, Jerusalem Post and the Wall Street Journal Among others.

What? -Totten writes about his experience in the Middle East and Africa, the difference to regular news however is that he gets very close to the essence of his story. By not only joining, but also living with US troops in Iraq and Afghanistan he offers an incredible insight view into the heads of the young soldiers as well as a new perspective on the US presence in those countries in general. Michael J. Totten gives you a first hand glance at the coexistence of the troops and local communities and he is not afraid to point fingers (at good and bad things alike).

Why should I have a look at it? -The man calls himself a “weird combination of liberal, libertarian, and neocon”,  hence he is not really following one single agenda but tries to implement other points of views too. Narrow minded people regardless of their shade might not be alienated within the first minutes because they will probably find parts of their own political orientation in his writings but at the same time be introduced to some new thoughts.  

My personal upshot! -Now that bombings have been widely stopped, murdering militias surpressed and something we could call the beginning of security and public order has been established in Iraq, European liberal medias of the likes of arte have lost their interest in reporting about that country (since now they have fewer opportunites to blame American soldiers for the murder of civilians committed by insurgents. Well, thank god there is still Israel right?). But the story is far from over and Totten shows you how Iraq is in a transitional state from chaos to stability. Now if you still need your fair share of action, there is an Afghanistan section too you know…

Michael Tottens Web Blog

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Filed under 3 Blogs in 3 Minutes!, Politics

Animal of the Week: The blob!


featured on this Church of Fabiversitys “Animal of the Week” section we have an highly underrated but peculiar creature that has found a permanent place in my heart, I am speaking of course about the blob. Blobs come in different colors and forms and each one of them is beautiful in its own way. 




















Next week on “Animal of the week”: King Kong – more monkey for your money!

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The Mister T-Model

For a 1000 years Americans have struggled with one question that would eventually change America (and Korea… and Vietnam… and Iraq… and Afghanistan… and here we go again with Iraq):

How do you coherently combine a professional resume, your personal interest, the Vita Activa , Indian spirituality (we are talking ’bout points, not feathers) and Mister T in one frame. 
Doubters, Haters, Cynics and Believers…. here is your answer!

Mister T Model

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Animal of the week: The Quagga!


this weeks featured animal on Church of Fabiversity’s “Animal of the Week” Section is the proud Quagga. As you can clearly see from the picture down below, Quaggas sport the prominent characteristics of both Zebras (the front section till foreleg) and Horses (middle section till rear end). That is why they are also called “Zorses”. But only by me and even though I’d like to think differently, I do not have any authority in the scientific community (at least not the one that deals with Quaggas).

Now imagine yourself on one of these things while going on a weekend foray with your family. Wouldn’t that be great? Freaking A! 


But they are all dead. Wow, now thats sad! Next week on “Animal of the Week”: Godzilla – Myth or fiction?


Filed under Matters of the church, Random interest