What Makes Newsworthy?


In all societies, news is about people and things that are significant to them. This does not mean that everything that happens to or by human beings is newsworthy, nor does it mean that all people are interested in the same things. For example, a man waking up, having breakfast and taking the bus to work every day may not make interesting or significant news, but if that same man is 90 years old and still catching the bus to work each morning, then this would be newsworthy.

In some cases, events can also be newsworthy when they affect large numbers of people or are very serious. Crime, war, disasters, disease and accidents are all examples of this. These are usually newsworthy because they are of concern to the majority of people, affecting them directly or potentially harming them.

Other events can be newsworthy because they are of interest to the people involved or because they have a high entertainment value. For example, a famous person’s achievements, scandalous behaviour or even their death is newsworthy; as are robberies, murders and other violent crimes.

Stories with a slant or which are unusual or unexpected are of particular interest, as are stories involving conflict and a sense of injustice. Statistics, figures and facts are of particular interest because they add validity to the news and can often be used as a source of evidence. Vagueness isn’t necessarily a bad thing if it contributes to the relevance of the news, but too many adjectives can obscure this.

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