News write power pt.

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News write power pt.

  1. 1. NEWSNEWS WRITINGWRITING ((NORTH - EAST - WEST - SOUTH)NORTH - EAST - WEST - SOUTH) = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = == = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = RHEE Fer HORTALEZARHEE Fer HORTALEZA * Media Man of Pangasinan ** Media Man of Pangasinan * = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = == = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = Write to EXPRESS,Write to EXPRESS, not to IMPRESS;not to IMPRESS; write to INFORM;write to INFORM; not to OVERWHELM!not to OVERWHELM!
  2. 2. • NEWS is an inevitable part of a person’s daily life. News is all around him. In fact, at many times in his lifetime, his own life could be the source of news. News, indeed, is all around us.
  3. 3. • WHAT IS ‘NEWS’? Various writers and authors have come up with different definitions of the NEWS. Invariably, all may be correct; but for an acceptable and easy- to-understand definition of the term, it should be safe to state that NEWS is any event, idea or opinion that is timely, that interests and affects a large number of persons in the community, and that is capable of being understood by them. (M. Lyle Spencer)
  4. 4. • Other sources would define NEWS as a break from the normal flow of events, an interruption in the unexpected. • Others would opt to state that NEWS is not concerned about the routine; but rather about the unexpected, the unusual or the dramatic. • Then, there are those who would simply agree with Mitchell Charnley when he said that NEWS is “tomorrow’s history done up in a neat today’s package”!
  5. 5. GOOD NEWS IS NO NEWS! • Then, too, there are situations when a newsman is faced with utterly discerning people’s comment that – to journalists or newspapermen – GOOD NEWS IS NO NEWS! Truly, one of the most frequent complaints an editor or a plain newsman hears is: “How come you guys never run any good news?” • While it is true that reporters seek out stories about murders, felonies or anomalies that did happen, not about murders, felonies or anomalies that didn’t, there are times, especially in the current atmosphere of journalism, when good news must be published or aired. • Perhaps, this is human nature. Admittedly, we do not usually go out of our way to tell people how good we feel; but if something is bothering us, we let them know!
  6. 6. Corollary to this, Chet Huntley of NBC NewsCorollary to this, Chet Huntley of NBC News deserves to be quoted when he said:deserves to be quoted when he said: “Journalists were never intended to be“Journalists were never intended to be the cheerleaders of society!”the cheerleaders of society!” Indeed,Indeed, reporters often see themselves as the thinreporters often see themselves as the thin buffer between people and theirbuffer between people and their government!government! What must likewise always beWhat must likewise always be remembered by the community journalist –remembered by the community journalist – including school paper advisers and campusincluding school paper advisers and campus journalists – is this rule:journalists – is this rule: “If we neglect to“If we neglect to report some NEWS because we thinkreport some NEWS because we think suppression is in the public interest,suppression is in the public interest, we’ll lose our credibility as impartialwe’ll lose our credibility as impartial news reporters.”news reporters.” It is important to note thatIt is important to note that there is a difference betweenthere is a difference between selectionselection ofof news andnews and suppressionsuppression of newsof news
  7. 7. TIPS FOR JOURNALISTS • Many journalism book authors have come up with scores of tips for their media colleagues through the years. All these add up to just one general rule: AS A JOURNALIST, WORK HARD! Presumably, to be more detailed, everything can be rounded up and enumerated this way: * BE INQUISITIVE * BE CONSTANT IN YOUR PURPOSE * BE FAIR AND BALANCED * BE GENUINELY INTERESTED IN PEOPLE * SEEK THE TRUTH * BE RESOURCEFUL * HAVE GUTS * MASTER YOUR GRAMMAR * KNOW YOUR MEDIUM * READ
  8. 8. • INVERTED PYRAMID • Initially, one must know that the structure of the NEWS when written or presented is that of an INVERTED PYRAMID. • This simply means that it is totally the reverse or opposite of a literary piece like the novel or short story. Normally, at the start or beginning of the novel or short story, the details or backgrounds are first presented oftentimes in chronological order, with the suspense and drama gradually building up. This is done so as to gather explanations for the eventual climax, where the reader finally gets to know what the conclusion or end is all about. The conclusion is at the base of the pyramid. • This is not so when it comes to NEWS. The climax or conclusion is at once presented right at the very beginning of the news item. The reader need not read on until the end to know what happened or what it is all about. Ergo, the NEWS structure is that of an inverted pyramid – with the base installed at the top portion instead. • This so-called ‘top portion’ is also referred to as the NEWS LEAD
  9. 9. ABCs OF NEWS WRITING:ABCs OF NEWS WRITING: ACCURACYACCURACY BREVITY or BALANCEBREVITY or BALANCE CLARITYCLARITY
  10. 10. • ACCURACY should be foremost in a journalist’s mind when he/she writes the news story. This is imperative. Foremost, of course, is accuracy in his/her facts. Are the facts gathered correct? Were they gathered as they really happened? • Nevertheless, this should not be confined only to facts of the story. There is a need to be accurate in other aspects. Names of persons in the story should be correctly spelled. You may have an inherent idea of how a certain name is spelled; but if the user spells it differently, use his spelling. ‘Arlene’ is normally spelled that way; but one may officially spell it as ‘Arleen’. There should also be accuracy in the person’s position, rank, title or designation. Places should likewise be spelled correctly. ‘Laoag City’ is not Lawag City’ and ‘La Union’ is not ‘La Onion’! Too, one should know whether a certain locality is a province, city, town, barangay or sitio.
  11. 11. • BREVITY concerns the use of words that are easy to understand. Not all newspaper readers have high IQs. The successful writer is one who writes stories that readers from various educational standings can promptly comprehend. • BALANCE refers to the journalistic rule that all sides of a story should be published and accommodated. When a school principal or a janitor is attacked due to foul-smelling comfort rooms in the school, their sides of the story should also find print. A journalist who does not bother to get the other side of the issue is disgustingly biased and unfair. • CLARITY concerns the writer’s ability to make his meanings immediately clear to all in the story he published. In the lead, ‘A truck and a car collided in front of the Vigan City public market yesterday, causing death to the driver.’, whose driver died – the car’s or the truck’s? This is not clear. In the sentence, ‘He was given one million’ , what did the man receive – one million pesos, one million cards or one million stones?
  12. 12. ELEMENTS OF THE NEWS • Why is the birth of Jesus Christ or the assassination of the late Senator Benigno ‘Ninoy’ Aquino not considered as NEWS? • Why is it not NEWS when two high school lovers quarrel and trade arguments in the school campus; but it all becomes NEWS when the girl gets hold of a knife and stabs the boy dead? • Why is it not NEWS anymore when a dog bites a boy in the street; but it becomes news when the boy suddenly bites the dog in return? • Why is it not NEWS when teacher Soledad Castillo is downed by the flu virus; but it becomes NEWS when Kris Aquino, Loren Legarda, Joseph ‘Erap’ Estrada or Richard Gut6ierrez catch the disease? • Or why is it not NEWS when Elmer Palaming is down with dengue but it becomes NEWS when 80 faculty members of the Bautista Central School are down with the illness?
  13. 13. • This is simply because NEWS has elements that make it – that’s it! – NEWS. These are the elements or characteristics that should be present to make a happening fall under the category of NEWS. Some of these are: •IMMEDIACY or TIMELINESS •PROXIMITY or NEARNESS •PROMINENCE •ODDITY •CONFLICT •CONSEQUENCE •DRAMA •NUMBERS •ROMANCE or SEX •HUMAN INTEREST
  14. 14. • There may be others included by some authors; but those mentioned above are the more important ones. • Basically, these elements form the basis for knowing whether a happening or occurrence makes up what is called NEWS. • The presence of two or more of these elements or a combination of any of them in an event or development makes such event qualified or eligible to be called NEWS.
  15. 15. It is INEVITABLE for a news reporter or news writer to personally cover an event, activity, occasion or development. But news coverage is unlike going to a party! It is a more delicate and demanding task. It is therefore imperative that a coverage man/woman is aware of what he/she should do when sent on such a journalistic errand. • Know the details of the event very well. Where is it going to be held? What time? What is the event all about? • Get a background of the event. It is best to go to the venue well-prepared with initial questions about the affair or occasion. COVERING AN EVENT / HAPPENING
  16. 16. • Be sure to come well-equipped. Do you have your writing pads, ball pens or pentel pens, cameras, tape recorders and the like? • Position yourself properly, strategically and accurately while inside or within the site of the affair. Do not stay too far away from the center of activities or the main stage. • Be observant about developments not only onstage but around the site. Write down anything you see therein which you consider important or vital so that you won’t forget such details later.
  17. 17. Do not be ashamed to ask questionsDo not be ashamed to ask questions about details of the happening,about details of the happening, the correct names and positionsthe correct names and positions and other data of personalities therein.and other data of personalities therein. Get the accurate spellingGet the accurate spelling of names and places therein.of names and places therein. It’s better to be inquisitive nowIt’s better to be inquisitive now than to be mistaken later.than to be mistaken later. Be sure that you have allBe sure that you have all the necessary or needed detailsthe necessary or needed details about the event before leaving the place.about the event before leaving the place. Make certainMake certain that you do notthat you do not lose or misplacelose or misplace your notes!your notes!
  18. 18. WHAT IS THE ‘LEAD’?
  19. 19. In any news story composed of many paragraphs, there is always the very first word or group of words that comprise the first paragraph. In journalistic parlance, this is known as the LEAD. As the name implies, it is the ‘LEADer’ in the news item. It starts the NEWS presentation.
  20. 20. • There are two kinds of LEADS, however; and these can be appropriately applied in writing the news. • Usually utilized by writers because of what they claim as its ‘you-can’t-go-wrong’ approach is the SUMMARY LEAD • It is named as such because it summarizes the event’s beginning by answering the well known questions attendant to a summarized form. These are Who, What, When, Where, Why and How – or the so-called ‘Five Ws and One H’. • One need not answer all six queries and lump everything in the lead, though. The writer has to consider the eventual length of the lead, as a very lengthy lead is not advisable. A long lead tends to confuse the reader – and even the writer himself! It has to be shortened so that the writer’s message in the news item becomes clearer.
  21. 21. • The other type of lead is the NOVELTY LEAD • Under such classification are various news approaches. These include the Question Lead, the Quotation Lead, the Punch Lead, the Picture Lead, the Freak Lead, the Cartridge Lead, the Parody Lead, the Sequence Lead, the Epigram Lead and some others. • These leads can likewise be effective if one knows what among them should be used and when to use any of them. • The news development should be thoroughly studied first before seeking out and choosing the appropriate novelty lead for the news story. • It is important to remember that if no novelty lead is apt or ideal for the news development, it is advisable to go back to the reliable summary lead.
  22. 22. HOW TO WRITEHOW TO WRITE THETHE LEADLEAD
  23. 23. • At your workplace later, you come face to face with your notes from the news coverage. What do you do with these? • Inevitably, you have to analyze or evaluate everything you have written. Select the biggest, most significant or most important fact or item -- or two or three facts or items – from among the entries you had written in your notes and install them under your MUST INCLUDE classification. Be sure that these are the biggest because from that item or these items will emerge your LEAD. • Supporting facts in your notes will go under the MIGHT INCLUDE portion. These are the pieces of information that will buttress, justify or strengthen your lead with additional details.
  24. 24. • Finally, cross out the non-important, non-relevant or useless details you had inadvertently earlier written in your notes. This is the EXCLUDE portion. It contains items which you had included but which you eventually found to be unnecessary or not essential to your story. If there is a need for re-evaluation, do so again. • Having classified your notes thus, you are now ready to start writing your news as you are now easily guided as to where to properly place or install the various facts or items you earlier gathered. • If you consequently decide that two or three items therein are of equal importance, then find a way to include both or all of them in the lead; but without having a kilometric lead in the process. Very long leads are taboo.
  25. 25. KILOMETRIC LEAD: ROSALES, Pangasinan – For several years now upon Mayor Ricardo Velo Revita assumption to office, the flooding in the whole town, especially in the Poblacion, which is blamed for blocked waterways or drainage system because of garbage and other waste products and the laxities of the past administration is now a thing of the past, this according to residents since the present administration in full cooperation of the sangguniang bayan members headed by Vice Mayor Romy Sim and some agencies, authored the goal of “Flood-free Rosales”. 86 words!
  26. 26. EDITED LEAD ROSALES – Mayor Ricardo V. Revita’s administration has implemented moves to ensure a ‘flood-free Rosales’ in the future. (18 words!)
  27. 27. SOMESOME DON’TSDON’TS IN STARTINGIN STARTING AA LEADLEAD
  28. 28. • DON’T start with an article (a, an, the) unless its use is necessary to get the feature of your story into the opening words of your lead. • DON’T start a lead with ‘Last Thursday…’ or ‘At a meeting held yesterday …’ or ‘In a game played last Monday …’ or the like. It is obvious that no such beginning contain the real feature of the story.
  29. 29. •DON’T start a lead with a sentence like ‘The Teachers Club conducted a meeting yesterday’. Remember that in such stories, the most interesting thing done or said at the meeting is the main feature of the story. •DON’T start a lead with ‘According to an annual tradition at the Pangasinan State University …’ Inform the reader at once what is to be done or tell some interesting fact about it first
  30. 30. •DON’T start a lead with an expression like ‘According to Regional Director Piolo Pascual …’ If what he said is the feature of the story, put those words in the lead itself! •DON’T start a lead like: ‘In the campus journalism press conference held last Friday, the Bonuan Boquig National High School won three first places.’ The interesting fact should come first. ‘Bonuan Boquig National High School students won three first places in the campus journalism press conference held last Friday.’ Would be a better, more precise and more acceptable lead.
  31. 31. •NEWS WRITING can be an easy task if YOU seriously set your heart and mind to it. What matters is that you must constantly think positively when you write the news. • The writers or newsmen whose stories you read in the newspapers were able to do it. Your school paper advisers were able to do it. Others before you – your classmates and friends and even your relatives -- were able to do it, too!
  32. 32. Instill in your mind, therefore:Instill in your mind, therefore: “IF THEY CAN DO IT,“IF THEY CAN DO IT, WHY CAN’T I?”WHY CAN’T I?”
  33. 33. TAPOS NA PO!!!

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