What Makes Newsworthy?

News is the current and ongoing story of events which affect or could affect people. People want to hear about the latest developments in the world around them and are often curious as to what other countries are doing. News articles are usually based on facts and should not contain personal opinion or speculation. However, journalists must make judgments about what is important enough to report.

There are many different ways of judging the newsworthiness of an event or article. Some of the criteria that may be used include:

Exclusivity: The more exclusive a piece of news is, the more likely it will be reported. This can be achieved through interviews, letters, investigations and surveys.

Magnitude: The bigger the story, the more likely it will be given prominence in the media. This can be measured in terms of the numbers of people affected or the potential impact.

Controversy: Stories with particularly controversial overtones. These include disputes, arguments, splits, strikes and wars.

Celebrity: Prominent people are often of interest to the public. Their lives, careers and appearances are newsworthy, particularly if they do something that goes against society’s generally accepted standards such as losing their fortune or being caught in a scandal.

Health: People are interested in stories about traditional remedies, medical research and diseases. They also want to know about hospitals and clinics, drug trials and the effects of diet, exercise and drugs.

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