What Makes News?


News is a report on an event or development which is current, interesting and significant. Usually it is reported by the media. It can be hard to decide what makes news, however, and some things which are important in one society may not be of interest to another. It is also important to distinguish between facts and opinion in a news story.

It is said that if something is unusual, interesting, significant and about people, it is probably newsworthy. This is a good rule of thumb, but there are exceptions. For example, a man waking up, having breakfast and going to work by bus does not make the news, because it is not unusual. But a coup in the next door country would.

A major factor in deciding what is newsworthy is whether it will affect the lives of ordinary people, and how. For example, a natural disaster can be newsworthy but only if it is affecting people in the area.

Other factors are how dramatic the event is, how many people are involved and how widespread its effects are. For example, a plane crash is much more likely to be newsworthy than a murder.

News should be presented fairly and without bias. The goal is to inform readers, not influence their opinions. It is also important to provide background information on the topic, so that readers can understand what is happening in the news. This is often done through interviews with sources, which can give a more personal touch to the article.

In journalism school, they teach that the best way to write a news story is to start with the most important information at the top of the page (who, what, where, when, why and how) and then add more detail in later paragraphs. This is called the inverted pyramid method. It helps the reader to find the most important information first and gives them a full understanding of what is happening.

There are many different types of news stories, from hard news to in-depth news features. Generally, hard news has to do with events that are happening now or very recently. It could be about a fire, a car accident or a political scandal. In-depth news is more like a biography of an individual or an investigation into a particular problem.

Most people are interested in the lives of famous people and what they do. It is especially interesting if they are in trouble or fall from grace, or if they are successful or fail. People are also interested in their health and so are interested in medical developments, hospitals, doctors, diseases, diets and exercise. And finally, everyone is interested in sex, even though most societies do not talk about it openly.