What Are the Common Characteristics of News?

News is information about current events. It can be delivered through a variety of mediums including newspapers, news magazines, television and the Internet. It is often the result of the reporting and writing skills of journalists. It also can be the result of a variety of other people who have a role in gathering, producing and delivering news, such as photographers, video producers and editors, and even audience members who write letters to the editor or call in to radio or TV talk shows.

The word news is most often associated with big world events that affect everyone, but it can also be about a local event that has a significant impact on a group of people. Regardless of the scope of the news, most people would agree that there are some characteristics that all good news stories have in common. These characteristics include timeliness, drama, consequence, proximity and narrative.

Timeliness is a key element in news because it gives people an idea of how recently something has happened. People are more interested in new information than old information, so if news is reported quickly it has the potential to be more interesting and engaging.

Drama is another aspect of news that can make it more engaging and attention-grabbing. People are fascinated by things that involve conflict, such as rivalries and arguments. This is especially true when those conflicts are in the public arena, such as in a news story about political parties or sports teams. People are also captivated by things that seem unusual or shocking, such as an accident, disaster or natural disaster.

Consequence is a feature that many people look for in a news story because it tells them what will happen as a result of the event or situation. This is particularly important when a story has the potential to change someone’s life in some way, such as an economic or health crisis. People tend to feel a greater sense of empathy and concern for the individuals involved in a news story when it has consequences that could affect them personally.

Proximity is a common characteristic of news because it helps readers to connect with the story and feel like they know the people involved. It can be as simple as a reporter telling the story of an acquaintance who is involved in a newsworthy event or situation. It can also be more elaborate, such as when a reporter interviews a person who knows someone who is directly affected by a newsworthy event or situation and shares their personal experience with that individual.

While most people are aware of these basic characteristics of news, they may not fully understand how these characteristics shape the kinds of stories that appear in their favorite newspaper, magazine or on a television or radio program. This article introduces models that help to explain the kinds of stories that make the headlines and how those stories influence people. These models are: the mirror model, the organizational model and the political model.

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