Published on October 8, 2007
Chapter 5: Chapter 5 News Selection Slide2: “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. Slide3: 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. Slide4: 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. Slide5: Line-up 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? Slide6: 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.