News is a way of communicating information about events that are new, important and interesting. It can also be a way of expressing opinions about these events.
What makes something a news story?
News stories usually have some kind of dramatic element. This can be a crime, for example, a bombing, a fire or an accident. It can also be an unusual event, such as a baby tiger born in the wild or a walk to school with your child and a baby elephant.
Whether an event is news depends on several things, including its impact, its relevance, the people involved and its timing. For instance, an assassination of a political figure is unlikely to be news, but it can be very significant to the community.
Drama: A violent incident or a high-profile scandal can make a news story, as can an important political decision. The assassination of Mrs Gandhi, for instance, is not an ordinary day’s events but it is a highly political event which has great significance and which people will remember for a long time to come.
It is also very likely that a story with dramatic elements will be about people, because these are the people who are involved in the story. It is therefore important to include a lot of facts and quotes from the people who are involved in the story, to add to its impact.
Weather: Changes in the weather are of interest, and may be related to people’s lives or to their food supply. They might be the result of a flood, drought or volcano eruption. The weather can affect the daily routine of people and so can cause problems, for example, with crops and harvests or food prices.
Famous people: Prominent men and women are of interest to all societies, even though they might not talk about it openly. They are particularly interesting when they fall from power, lose their money or get into a scandal.
Health: The stories of illness and cures, medical research, drugs, diet and exercise are of interest to most people. They are of particular interest to people with health problems, such as cancer or heart disease.
Money: Stories about the fortunes of people, school fees, tax and Budget issues, the prices of food, wage rises and compensation claims are also of interest to many people. They can be interesting and uplifting, or they can be sad, depressing and upsetting.
The News Manual has lots of useful information on what makes something a news story. It can help you understand what is news and how it is reported, but it does not necessarily account for all the different kinds of stories that you will see in newspapers and on television and radio.
The best way to get a feel for how news is reported is by watching the TV or listening to the radio and trying to follow the various reports that are made about what is happening in the world. In this way you will become a better judge of what is news and how it can be used to shape your own views about what matters most in the world.