What Is News?

News is information that is important to people, such as the results of a sports match, an election result or the discovery of an archaeological find. It is usually reported in newspapers and on radio or television. The aim of news is to inform and educate its audience. In some cases it may also entertain. However, it is important to remember that entertainment should come from other sources – music and drama on radio, cartoons and crosswords in newspapers, for example.

There are many things that can be classified as news, but not all of them are necessarily interesting. To be considered newsworthy, information must be new and must affect a large number of people. It should also be unbiased and factual, and should not contain any personal opinions or bias. It must also be verifiable, so that readers can be confident in its accuracy.

A news article should begin with a short paragraph which is directly related to the main point of the story, often called a lede or lead. The purpose of this paragraph is to catch the reader’s attention and to get them interested in reading the rest of the news item. It is usually done by using a dramatic anecdote, a surprising fact or an important breaking news update.

The rest of the news item is then given in a series of paragraphs which answer the questions who, what, when, where and why. This is a classic approach to news writing and it is often used in journalism classes. It is important to remember, though, that the news item should not become too bogged down in these details. It is a delicate balance that must be achieved, with enough detail to give the readers a full picture but not so much that they lose interest.

Many news articles are aimed at a specific demographic. For example, a newspaper reporting on a school function is likely to be read by parents with young children. A newspaper reporting on local zoning laws might be read by realtors and business owners. Alternatively, a website devoted to an event or location is likely to have a more general audience. The size of this audience will vary depending on the type of news article – a national or international story will have a much wider readership than an article about events in a local community.