News is anything which relates to human affairs and which people want to hear about. It must be new, interesting, significant and about people. It is usually reported in a hurry, so that it can be read and understood quickly. A story will have the most news value if it involves a large number of people.
Different societies are interested in different kinds of News. For example, a bug which threatens a crop will be newsworthy in one society but not in another. It is also the case that what may be important in one society is not necessarily important in others, and vice versa.
Generally speaking, the more dramatic the story, the more likely it will be to make the headlines. However, it is not only the degree of drama which determines the importance of a news item but also the extent to which it is likely to affect people in the real world. A story about a coup in the next country over, for example, will be much more significant than an ordinary robbery.
There is a certain amount of conflict between the men who make and those who report the news. In the past, those who broke bad news were often put to death, or at least hung, but this is no longer the case. Nevertheless, the conflict between what is important and what is not is very real, especially in commercial radio and television. Advertisers pay a lot of money to have their commercials broadcast, and the gatekeepers of these stations must always decide whether they are serving the public by telling them about something which is important or by avoiding it so that they can keep their advertising profits.
The quality of News depends on how well it is told. It is important to present it briefly so that people will read it, clearly so that they can understand it, picturesquely so that it will be remembered and, above all, accurately so that it can guide their actions. In addition, News has educational values. It can help people to become more informed about their surroundings, for example by giving them weather forecasts or train timings.
News must be unbiased and fair. In order to achieve this, it must be cross-checked to ensure that the facts are correct. It is also essential that the news is not influenced by personal or political bias. This can be difficult, but it is essential if a news story is to have credibility.
There are many sources of News, but the best source is the one that gives a comprehensive and balanced account of the subject. A good example is the BBC World Service, which provides a variety of viewpoints from around the world. Other examples are Reuters, the Associated Press and Fox News. Often, newspapers and broadcasters will get their news from one of these services, rather than sending their own reporters. This saves time and money. Having access to the best source of information is essential to the success of a newspaper.