News is information about events that are important or exciting. It can be broadcast on television, printed in a newspaper, posted online or even shouted across a classroom. Whether it is serious or funny, news should be accurate and up-to-date. It is also important to have a clear and concise title. This will help people find the article and understand what the news is about.
The purpose of the news media – newspapers, magazines, radio and television – is to inform and educate the public. This can include reporting on politics, crime, weather and local affairs as well as education and sport. It can also provide entertainment and amusement, for example, through music and drama programs on the radio or cartoons and crosswords in a newspaper.
While it may seem that there is a certain formula to news writing, it can be quite difficult to determine what exactly makes a story newsworthy. Generally, stories are evaluated on the basis of three criteria: Magnitude: The significance of the event, either in terms of the numbers involved or the potential impact. Interest: The human element of the story – it can be people, animals or an unfolding drama; and/or entertainment value – humorous treatment, entertaining photographs or a witty headline. If a story can be classified as more than one of these, it is often labelled as feature news.
In addition to evaluating the importance of an event, journalists must decide how much detail to include in the story. This is often done on a case-by-case basis, depending on the interest and attention of the audience. For example, a report about a plane crash will have a lot more detail than a minor sporting accident.
As with any type of writing, it is important to have a second pair of eyes look over the article before submitting it for publication. This will help catch any spelling or grammatical errors as well as helping to clarify awkward sentences. It is also a good idea to have the editor read it at the end of the process, as they will be able to offer some constructive criticism and make the piece more interesting.
Many different theories have been put forward as to why some things become newsworthy and others do not. These range from the Mirror Model, which suggests that news should reflect reality, to the Political Model which believes that news is a reflection of the pressures on various governmental processes. More recently, the idea of Market Research has been suggested, with the suggestion that news is a reflection of what the audience wants to see. However, this is disputed by many journalists, who argue that the idea of Marketing only influences how a news story is presented, but does not dictate what should be considered as newsworthy. The debate is likely to continue into the future.