Journalism
            What’s Your Function?
          Media forms, and journalism in
          particular, serve a variet...
Journalism
               Values and Functions
          • News values identify what makes a story
            “newsworthy...
Journalism
              A Journalist’s Functions
      •Political Function: Act as a watchdog of government. Provide
    ...
Journalism
             A Journalist’s Functions
          •Sentry Function: Look ahead to what is coming. Monitor
       ...
Journalism
               A Journalist’s Functions
           •Economic Function: Provide information on
           produc...
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Functions

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Functions

  1. 1. Journalism What’s Your Function? Media forms, and journalism in particular, serve a variety of purposes for a community. As both a potential journalist and a media “consumer,” it is important to recognize these “functions.” July 10 Media Literacy 1
  2. 2. Journalism Values and Functions • News values identify what makes a story “newsworthy,” what makes the story “valuable” to a reader. • Journalistic functions identify what the story is doing for the reader. • Values describe a quality; functions describe an action. • Just as stories can exhibit more than one value, a story can also fulfill more than one function. July 10 Media Literacy 2
  3. 3. Journalism A Journalist’s Functions •Political Function: Act as a watchdog of government. Provide information on which the audience can base political decisions. Cover all government activities: defend public access, investigate wrongdoing, and evaluate budgets and programs. (Ex: Woodward and Bernstein, Watergate) •Record-keeping Function: Maintain an accurate record of local, national, and world news (Ex: weather, obituaries, voting records of Congress). Ferguson, Donald L. and Jim Patten. Journalism Today! National Textbook Company: Lincolnwood, IL 1986. July 10 Media Literacy 3
  4. 4. Journalism A Journalist’s Functions •Sentry Function: Look ahead to what is coming. Monitor trends and directions to make the audience aware. (Ex: Fall fashion) •Entertainment Function: Provide diversion as well as information; address a variety of ages and interests. (Ex: stories about famous people, comic strips, advice columns) •Social Function: Help society maintain relationships at a variety of levels by communicating daily life events and concerns. (Ex: Community calendar, school board meeting notes). Ferguson, Donald L. and Jim Patten. Journalism Today! National Textbook Company: Lincolnwood, IL 1986. July 10 Media Literacy 4
  5. 5. Journalism A Journalist’s Functions •Economic Function: Provide information on products, goods, services, and events through news and advertising. (Ex: movie reviews, cell phone comparison) •Marketplace Function: Be a forum for a variety of ideas, concepts, and products, a place where the concerns and interests of the audience are displayed, investigated, and reflected upon. (Ex: classified ads, collection of letters to the editor) NOTE: this is different from the economic function. The press should act as a voice/outlet for its audience and should reflect audience interests. Ferguson, Donald L. and Jim Patten. Journalism Today! National Textbook Company: Lincolnwood, IL 1986. July 10 Media Literacy 5

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