News are events that are new, unusual, interesting or significant. They can be reported by humans or non-humans. They may be positive or negative. They are usually based on fact. However, the facts presented in news articles can be different depending upon the perception of a society.
What makes it into a newspaper, onto a television news line-up or posted on a news Internet site is determined by people who work for a particular medium (print, broadcasting or cable, or the Internet). Whether something is considered to be newsworthy or not is decided by editors, who are also known as gatekeepers. Taking recommendations from reporters, assistant editors and others in their organization, they decide what is to be printed or broadcast on the news of the day.
The main factors that determine if a news story is to be published or broadcasted are the five W’s: who, what, where, when and why. Having a keen understanding of the context of a news event will help you to write an article that will capture the attention and interest of your audience.
Timeliness is another key factor in determining what is to be considered newsworthy. It is not good enough to be a historical event; it must be current. Generally, things that have happened within the past ten years are not newsworthy. However, if something major, such as a fire or an earthquake has occurred, these are definitely newsworthy.
Humans are very interested in other humans and what they do. The plight of strangers is of great concern to many, and the success of one person over another is always of interest. This is why sports results are newsworthy, as are the opinions of politicians, religious leaders and celebrities.
All societies are interested in sex, although they may not be openly so. Sex stories that involve behaviour are usually newsworthy, but those which involve sexual activity or reproduction are less so.
A story must have a title that is catchy and to the point, using Associated Press style guidelines (unless your publication specifies otherwise). Your byline, which includes your name as the author, should appear at the top of the lead. The rest of the lead should contain most of the main facts that you are reporting on.
Follow up your main facts with any additional information that will add to the story. This can be in the form of quotes, additional background details or statistics. This will give your audience the sense that they are getting more than just the headlines in their newspapers or on their television news programmes. This will also make your article more unique and stand out from those of your competitors. It will also increase your credibility. This will allow your audience to trust you as a source of news in the future.