What Makes the News


The news is the information that gets reported in newspapers, magazines and on TV and radio. It also is found on the Internet. It is the current events that are important to many people. The news is a mix of information that is both factual and opinionated.

The items that make it onto the 5:00 pm line-up on the TV news or into the front page of a newspaper or onto a news Internet site are determined by people who work for that medium. Depending upon the medium they are called editors, news directors or even news managers. They sift through the many suggestions that come from reporters, assistant editors and other employees and decide what will be newsworthy. The people who determine what makes the news are known as gatekeepers.

When deciding what will be newsworthy they consider five things. They are: is it new, unusual, interesting, significant or about people? The more of these characteristics that an item has the more likely it is to be newsworthy.

In addition to being current, the news must have a certain amount of drama in it. For example a story about a robbery at a convenience store will likely be newsworthy because it has good and bad characters and shows clearly who is doing what to whom.

The goal of the news media is to inform and educate its readers, listeners and viewers. It is not to entertain them, although it may do so by including some elements of humour in the stories.