News is information about important events that affect people’s lives. It is typically delivered through newspapers, magazines, radio and television, but is also available online. News aims to inform and educate its audience, but it can also entertain them. People often have different opinions about what constitutes news, but there are some basic characteristics that all news stories share. These are timeliness, drama, consequence, proximity and narrative.
Timeliness is an important characteristic of news because it ensures that people know what is happening right now. This is why newspapers usually put the most recent news at the top of the page. This way people can see the latest developments without having to scroll down. It is also why many TV and radio shows have a ‘breaking news’ segment that provides the latest updates on current affairs.
Drama is another important characteristic of news because it increases the likelihood that a person will read or watch the story. People are interested in stories that have a high level of intrigue, such as a crime or natural disaster. These stories often involve a high number of people and are very impactful.
Consequence is an important characteristic of news because it explains why the event or situation is significant. For example, a cyclone or bush fire might be significant because it could cause widespread damage and loss of life. People are also interested in stories that have a high level or intensity of conflict, such as wars and terrorist attacks.
Proximity is an important characteristic of news because it reveals how close the event or situation is to the people being affected. This is why a story about a disaster that occurs in a far-off country might be less interesting to readers than a disaster that happens in their own city or town.
Narrative is an important characteristic of news because it tells a story in a compelling and engaging way. This is why news stories are often written in the form of a story with a beginning, middle and end. It is also why many TV and radio programs have a presenter and voiceover that help to entice viewers or listeners to stay with the show.
It is important to be critical of the information that is being fed to us by news media sources. Many of these sources have biases that influence their interpretation of news, and it is important to be aware of these when reading or listening to the news. Some helpful resources for understanding and evaluating information include fact checking websites, which provide tools to evaluate whether an article is accurate. It is also recommended to try to get information from a variety of sources to avoid confirmation bias and to gain a broader perspective on complex issues. This will encourage a more informed and engaged citizenry. In turn, this will lead to a healthier democracy and a more sustainable world.