We explain what a news story is and how it is structured. Also, what are its characteristics and the types of news that exist.
What is the news?
The news is a brief journalistic text , of a very broad definition, whose fundamental principle is to make a cut of the political, social, economic reality or of the nature that it is, to relate it, explain it or spread it among the public, considering it particular interest or novelty.
The criteria to know what is and what is not news is diverse, depending on the interests of the editorial profile of the given media outlet , but priority is usually given to current , little-known or very recent information.
The news, in the television or radio media , is equivalent to a brief specific informative segment of the programming , in which this type of information is addressed.
Characteristics of the news :
The word news comes from the Latin notitia , derived from noscere (to know) . In the ancient Roman empire , the Notitia dignitatum was a document in which the official organization of the empire, both Western and Eastern, was inscribed, and is one of the few documents of the time that survive to this day.
The meaning of the word news had to do with what became public knowledge.
The entry provides a general idea of the event being reviewed.
The news structure is quite uniform, despite the fact that it can be presented in various media . In it, the famous inverted pyramid of information hierarchy is applied: it goes from the most general to the most specific. This means dividing the news text into:
- Entrance or entrance. First paragraph, where the news information is summarized, so that if it is the only thing that is read, you can have a general idea of the event reviewed.
- Body of the notice. Remaining paragraphs of the text, where the rest of the information will be, also hierarchized as follows:
- Second paragraph or supporting paragraph. There begins to develop what is contained in the entry.
- Developing. Paragraphs that go more and more to the detail of the information.
- Auction. The last paragraph of the news, where some collateral idea would go.
One of the principles of the news is its veracity. The content must not be fictional, fanciful, or speculative , but must be strictly limited to narrating or explaining what happened.
A story cannot be influenced by the journalist’s feelings.
Similarly, the news should not accommodate the feelings , considerations or personality of the journalist, but should stick to the facts, and therefore requires language as close as possible to the faithful description of what happened.
News events, to be news, must be limited to a recent time frame , if not immediate. An old piece of news loses all interest for its public, since it deals with matters that have already been widely disclosed by other media or refer to situations that have lost their validity in reality.
It is expected that a news item will not take more time than necessary to give the information.
Another of the governing principles of the news is its brevity. Whether in written, radio or television support , it is expected that a piece of news does not take more time than necessary to punctually review the information, since there is no room in it for ramblings, reflections or any other type of secondary elaboration.
The issue to be reviewed should contain sensitive information for the bulk of the reading population , not for a few individuals. After all, a communication medium broadcasts information without discerning who may have access to it .
The 6 questions
It is customary to build the entries or leads of a piece of news from responding, in a single paragraph, to a series of six specific questions, detailed in order of importance:
- What happened?
- Who did it happen to?
- How did it happen?
- When it happened?
- Where did it happen?
- Why did it happen?
The latter, together with a possible “What did it happen for?”, are usually part of what we have previously called the development of the news.
The headline includes information in fine print before the headline.
There is a set of texts that accompany the news and add information to it, highlight part of it or serve to focus certain aspects of its content, namely:
- Volanta or epigraph. It appears before the title in small letters, to give an allegorical, critical or paradoxical framework to the news. It is not used much.
- Forename. Information in small print just before the headline, to give a specific context, necessary for the interpretation of the news text.
- Headline. The title of the news, in large letters that attract attention.
- Download or subtitle. Expand the content of the headline or epigraph a little, before fully entering the news.
- Photography . The news is usually illustrated with photographs, especially when it comes to events.
Types of News
Future news announces events that are going to happen.
According to the type of information to which they are due and the treatment they give it, we can discern the following types of news:
- Immediate. Those that outline the information that has just happened, many times still in full development.
- Of ephemeris. They review events of social and public interest based on well-known personalities, local or universal personalities, or commemorative events.
- Of human interest. They are devoted to reviewing moving information, appealing to sensitize the readers, usually around a particularly weak community .
- Of future. Events are announced that will occur soon and that have already been announced or confirmed by those responsible.
- Chronological. They propose the re-elaboration of a set of events from the instants in which they happened.
- Of service. As their name implies, they provide useful and timely information to the community.
- Of situation. They address issues that are sensitive to the community to prepare a report on the state of the matter, without requiring news or recent events to do so.
- Complementary. They develop edges not addressed by other previous or contemporary news.
- Specials. They are motivated by events of great local or international relevance, whose transcendent nature deserves a more detailed review, often daily, if it is something prolonged in time, such as wars or the Olympic Games , for example.
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