Presentation on theme: "Newsworthiness How to know if it is news or not. Newsworthiness Determining if an idea for a story is newsworthy or not can sometimes be a challenging."— Presentation transcript:
Newsworthiness Determining if an idea for a story is newsworthy or not can sometimes be a challenging task. While you think the idea is interesting and has a place in your school’s paper, the vast majority of your school might disagree. In order to decide if something is news, you will need to know what news determinants are.
News Determinants What makes an event, person, or idea news? Prominence Proximity Timeliness Consequence/Impact Human Interest
Prominence Well-known people (political figures, celebrities, professional athletes) are newsworthy. Average people are not. If someone who is well-known does something, it is news. Example: If you volunteer at a local children’s hospital, it most likely won’t make headlines. However, if the Queen of England, the President of the United States, or an All-Star Baseball Player does, it is newsworthy and will make headlines. The same holds true for your school’s publication; your principal, the senior class president, varsity quarterback, etc. are all prominent members of your school.
Proximity Events closer to home are more newsworthy than events taking place far away. If an event happens in close proximity to your home, it is news. Example: A small brush fire in your city is news. However, a small brush fire three states away is not news. The same holds true for your school’s publication; events at school and in your community have close proximity to your home.
Timeliness People want to know what just happened or what is happening now. The more timely the event is, the more newsworthy it is. People what to know what happened yesterday, or what is happening right now. Those events are more newsworthy than an event that is a month, or even a week old.
Consequence/Impact Stories that directly impact or affect your readers have significant news value. The greater the impact the story has on your readers, the more newsworthy it is. Example: If a giant storm cuts out power, floods a town, and causes a lot of damage, it is newsworthy. The same holds true for your school’s publication; new school policies, new administrators, and school events that impact the students at your school are newsworthy.
Human Interest Stories that are interesting to read are newsworthy. There are three types of human interest stories; emotional stories, stories of conflict, and unique stories. Emotional: If a story makes a reader happy, sad, sympathetic, angry, etc., it is newsworthy. Conflict: People like to read stories about conflict: elections, sports, competitions, arguments. These stories are newsworthy. Unique: Stories that are unusual, unique, and out-of-the ordinary are interesting and newsworthy.
What are the news determinants? What news determinants do these potential stories have?
New Dress Code The administration at your school will begin enforcing a new dress code on Monday. This new dress code is a lot more strict than the one currently in place. News Determinants: -Proximity – this is happening at your school -Timeliness – this is starting next week -Consequence/Impact – this will affect all students
Teacher Retiring One of the most loved teachers at your school is retiring at the end of the year after teaching at your school for 35 years. News Determinants: -Proximity – this is happening at your school -Consequence/Impact – this will affect a lot students -Prominence – this teacher was a favorite one among students
Girls Volleyball Goes Undefeated The girls varsity volleyball team at your school just won their last game of the season last night, finishing regular season play with an undefeated record. Playoffs begin next week. News Determinants: -Proximity – this is happening at your school -Consequence/Impact – this will affect a lot students -Timeliness – this just happened last night
Fun Tutorial Students love taking selfies, so why not write a how-to tutorial that includes pictures and step-by-step instructions on how to take the perfect selfie. News Determinants: -Human Interest – this is a fun and engaging story that many of your readers will like reading
Saturday School Your school is deciding if they can offer Saturday School to students to help them make up credits and absences. The school will present their case at the next board meeting. News Determinants: -Consequence/Impact – the decision that the board makes could potentially impact a lot of students -Proximity – this is happening in your school -Timeliness – it will occur at the next board meeting
Is it news? Are these scenarios newsworthy for your city newspaper? What about your school newspaper?
Fire! A fire broke out last night around 11 p.m. at your rival high school. The fire caused significant damage and classes are cancelled for a week. City Newspaper – Yes. This story has proximity, timeliness, and consequence for the people in your city. It is likely that people in your city are directly affected by this fire. School Newspaper – No. While this story has proximity and timeliness, it does not directly affect your school’s population. UNLESS if it is a school in the same district.
Student Council Elections It is almost time for your school’s student council elections. The ASB class just announced the filing period and candidate requirements. City Newspaper – No. This story does not have a big enough impact on their total audience base. School Newspaper – Yes. This information has timeliness, proximity, and impact. This is a newsworthy story for a school publication.
Students Study in France Fifty students from your school were selected to go to France to study for a semester. It is the largest group of foreign exchange students in your district’s history. City Newspaper – Yes. While this story is about high school students, there are two things that make it newsworthy: the number of students studying in France, and the fact that it is the largest group in your district’s history. School Newspaper – Absolutely! This story is likely to have all five news determinants.
Professional Sports Team Win The professional sports team in your city won a game last night. City Newspaper – Yes. This story has prominence, proximity, and timeliness. School Newspaper – No. This story does not directly affect or impact people at your school.
Let’s Review To decide if a story is newsworthy, reporters must consider its news determinants. Prominence - if there are any famous or well-known individuals involved Proximity – how close the story is to the audience Timeliness – how close in time the story is to the time of publication Consequence/Impact – whether or not the content of the story will impact people; the more people it impacts the more newsworthy it is Human Interest – does the story evoke emotions or is it unique