FUNCTIONS OF HEADLINES• Headlines give readers the newsat a glance.• Headlines draw attention and capture drama.
Beautifulprincess marries prince charming; Shrek commits suicideThird little pig foundguilty of stealingmermaid’s voice
Snow Whitebrags about notreally likingporridgebelonging to thebears
The good fairy wins prize for refusingto deliver Pinocchio’s conscience
Headlines organize the newsand the newspaper. Headlines capture a tone that is consistent to the story. TONE -- refers to voice, focus, overall identity and purpose
FUNDAMENTAL STEPS INWRITING HEADLINES : 1. Read and summarize the story.
Dozens of students at Angeles CityNational High School became illyesterday after being served a tunalunch in the school cafeteria,officials said. Forty-two third-, fourth- andfifth-graders were taken to twoarea hospitals, where most werereleased after treatment for food poisoning and dehydration. Eightstudents were kept overnight forobservation at Angeles Medical Center.
Guide Questions:What are the key words?What is the point of the story?What does the lead/lede and the nut graf say?
Some guidelines: Demand accuracy. There is no place in newspapers for headlines that are not absolutely accurate. Near enough is not good enough. Keep it short and direct. Write active, rather than passive, heads. Almost every head is improved with a strong verb.(a THESAURUS is a good investment!)
WHAT CAN I CHANGE Ask yourself: WITHOUT CHANGING OR CLOUDING THE MEANING OF THE SENTENCE? Make every word count. Avoid headlines that waste words. “Eating" is far more direct than “being served with"
3. Shorten the sentence by putting it in headline form
The Basics of headline form: Usepresent tense. Ex: Angry GMA promises to wipe out Abu Sayyaf Duterte wants Misuari freed
Eliminate the articles a, an and the Ex: Skip the highway, mayor appeals to the motorists `The Aviator’ wins 3 awards
Replace the conjunction and with acomma.Example: Pangasinan groups, execs act to revive mangroves DENR to probe Gov, son on illegal logging raps
Use figures rather than writing out numbers higher than one. Teenager killed, 2 hurt Example: in collision Attack on rebel leader kills son, 3 others in Arayat
• Drop the end punctuation• Use single instead of double quotation marks • Example: •Al-Qaeda capable of ‘devastating attack,’ says UN
Use semi-colon when there are 2 subjects. Example: Trapped child freed from cave; Rescuers lauded for ‘heroic’ effort For future-tense headlines, replace WILL with TO Example: 3 Celebrities to appear on game show
Supply attribution where neededExample: Eating more fat raisescancer risk, new studyconcurs New research underscores link between cancer, high-fat diet
Use common abbreviations that are approved by your stylebook Example: Ebdane warned of DPWH syndicate DBM passes buck on ‘love bonus’
Avoid bad breaks Never divide a first and last name Ex: Victory for Al Gore seen Never divide a title and a nameNever hyphenate to end a line Ex: Promising edit- ing career end- ed by lousy head
Avoid adjective-noun break when each has a meaning distinct from its parts Ex: Ex-con is fried chicken chain’s manager of year• Rewritten version: Ex-con named best manager by chicken chain
Avoid preposition-object breakEx: Republican support for tax break guaranteed Pray for Pope; don’t speculate
4. Substitute shorter words and terms for long ones to make the headline fit
5.Avoid headlinese Headlinese – clichedterminology of short words