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Chapter 5 News Selection “The news is what we say it is.” – Agree or disagree? News must be processed and distilled News judgment [“Blind Men and the Elephant”]

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chapter 5

Chapter 5

News Selection

“The news is what we say it is.” – Agree or disagree?
  • News must be processed and distilled

News judgment

  • [“Blind Men and the Elephant”]
  • Distinguish between stories that are serious and significant, essential, affect lives directly … from those that are nice to know buy have little impact …Stories that exist by themselves and stories that are “manufactured.” Examples?
  • News judgment is affected by our background.
  • Newsroom myopia … pack journalism … social isolation of news people.
Audience perspective
  • News is a combination of meeting audience “needs” and “wants.” What does this mean? Development of “infotainment.”

Crime coverage

  • Television is driven by pictures … violent crime provides good video … white-collar crime is dull.
  • People are concerned about crime .. heavy coverage affects public perception of crime.
Hard news vs. soft news
  • Difference in hard news and soft news? Hard news is what people expect to see and hear … soft news is optional. Examples?

Lead stories

  • What makes a story the lead story in a newscast? Affects or interests the most people in the audience.
  • Always put most current developments at the top of the story.
  • Should you group stories from most important to least important, from the start to the end of the newscast? Need strong lead stories for the start of each segment.
  • Thematic blocking – similar stories grouped together. Examples?
  • End newscast or segments of newscast on a “positive” note … why?
Content of Newscasts

Stories to avoid?

Minor crimes, fender-benders, suicides, minor court decisions, small fires. Exceptions?

Spot News (?)

Event that breaks out without warning.

“News doesn’t change, only the names”

Use judgment. May be momentous, unusual in some way.