The Luxembourg Statistical Society would like to invite you to the talk by Prof. Sarah Gelper on “Estimating the Effect of Second Screening on TV Viewing using Mobile Diaries”. The talk will take place on Thursday 23rd February at 12:30 PM in hybrid mode. If you attend it in person, it will be in the room on the first floor of the Maison du Nombre, MNO-E01-0146030, on the University Campus Belval.

Sarah Gelper is Associate Professor in Business Analytics with a Specialization in Marketing Analytics at Université du Luxembourg.


People often use second devices, such as their mobile or tablet, while watching TV. Such « second screening » might enhance engagement and increase viewership but also risks distracting viewers and reducing interest in the show. Estimating the effect of second screening on repeat viewing is challenging for three reasons. (1) We need to observe behavior on two different devices (the data challenge); (2) the effect of second screening might vary with viewer and show characteristics (the heterogeneity challenge); and (3) second screening is highly endogenous behavior (the endogeneity challenge). This paper leverages large-scale individual-level data from mobile diaries of 1,702 US TV viewers on 2,755 primetime TV shows over 3-6 weeks in which viewers report both viewing and second screening. The data are augmented to account for a broad set of marketing influences such as show communications and promos. We characterize heterogeneity by four latent viewer classes (heavy viewers, sports enthusiasts, sitcom viewers, and light viewers) and use a causal forest analysis to estimate the heterogeneous effects of second screening on repeat viewing. Despite the possible risk of distraction, second screening does not harm actual TV viewing, and this effect is robust over various types of second screening activities and across viewer segments. Second screening impacts attitudes more than behaviors – unlike actual viewing, stated viewing intentions are affected right after the second screening experience. Specifically, viewing intentions increase when people use a second screen to communicate about the show, but decrease when they use the second screen for show-unrelated activities.

Practical information

Date: 23 February 2023
Time: 13:00-14:00
Place: room MNO-E01-0146030 (Belval campus)
Fee: free
Registration: please register by sending an email to Christophe Ley (Société Statistique Luxembourgeoise)

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