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What Is News?

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News is information about current events, obtained as soon as possible and made available to the public. News has long been an important part of the media. It can be conveyed by printed word, oral presentation and through television and radio. It has been a vehicle of propaganda, influencing the course of history as well as a means for promoting and selling products.

In the past, newspapers and broadcasters had an official role in presenting the news. This role has now been taken over by the internet, with its own particular characteristics. The internet has greatly increased the speed of transmission of information, as well as its distribution. It has also changed the way we consume news, with the development of RSS and podcasts.

Even though events happen all the time, not everything is newsworthy. News is the information about those events which are new or unusual and which affect people’s lives.

Some examples of news are war, politics and elections, social unrest and changes, crime, business and economics, health, weather and disasters. But there is much more to news than that.

What makes an event newsworthy will vary from society to society. The classic statement is that “dog bites man” is not news, but “man bites dog” is. But this is not the only case: the type of animal which is eaten, how it is prepared and eaten, and the fact that it has been killed or injured can all be newsworthy.

An important characteristic of news is that it should be objective. This is not easy to achieve: it involves attempting to present all sides of a story in an impartial manner. There is no such thing as unbiased news, however, because every person has both conscious and unconscious biases which influence what they consider to be newsworthy and how they report it.

In addition, it is important to understand that news reports are not the same as facts. A story may contain many facts, but if the writer’s opinion or interpretation of those facts is included, it is no longer news. A good news article will provide enough factual information so that the reader can form their own opinions about the topic and make up their own mind.

While there are many different sources of news, the most common are television, radio and newspaper. In some countries, these sources are regulated to ensure that they present a balanced and objective view of the world. Other sources of news include the internet, magazines and blogs. Often, these are independent from the mainstream media and are intended to challenge the views of established media outlets. This can lead to a more diverse range of viewpoints being presented. It can also allow formerly marginalised groups to have their voices heard. This is often seen in the political arena where bloggers can provide alternative perspectives on important issues. This is often referred to as the ‘grassroots’ media. This can help to promote democracy and increase freedom of speech.

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