A news story is an item or piece of information which is published in a newspaper, magazine or on radio and television. The purpose of news is to inform and educate the public, but it can also be a source of entertainment.
News articles are usually written in a formal style and can contain both factual and subjective elements. The news writer must research the topic carefully to ensure that what they report is accurate and to give the reader a good overall picture.
There are a number of criteria which determine whether an event is considered newsworthy, including: Magnitude: How significant in terms of numbers or potential impact it is. Proximity: Is the event happening close to home? Controversy: Does it involve conflict, tension or public debate? Prominence: Is a well-known person involved? Currency: Is the event currently a hot topic of conversation?
Although many events may be unusual, they can still not be classified as news if they are not reported for the first time. For example, if an old man gets up, has breakfast and goes to work on the bus every day this is not newsworthy, but if he drives an unusual car for an unusual reason it could be.
No theory of news values can explain everything, and arbitrary factors such as chance and convenience also play an important role in selecting stories for publication. Nonetheless, the study of newspapers and their editorials can contribute to an understanding of how news is produced.