News is the information that comes from events that happen in the world, and is broadcast or read in newspapers, magazines, on TV, radio and on the Internet. The decision about which of these events to include as news is made by people called editors, or news directors, and other decision-makers within the particular news organization. This process can involve many different steps, but in the end it is a matter of what matters most to the people who will be reading or watching the news.
Timeliness: The most recent events should be the focus of the news story, and it must be clear who is responsible for what has happened, how it has happened and what will happen next. The news should be interesting, not dull or boring.
Drama: Much of the news we see in newspapers and magazines, on TV, on the radio and on the Internet is dramatic. It involves good and bad characters or situations, and can be very exciting to watch or listen to.
Consequence: A news story should make a difference to the lives of its readers or viewers. It should have an immediate effect on their lives, either by causing them to change their behaviour or by bringing about a greater understanding of the situation.
Proximity: The news must be close to the readers or viewers. It should be possible to identify the characters involved, and it should be easy for them to contact them.
Composition: The news must be well constructed, and it should contain a balance of facts, information, speculation, opinion and comment. It should be easy for the reader or viewer to follow, and it should be written in an attractive manner.
Topicality: The news must be interesting, and it should include subjects that are of interest to the audience. It should also be relevant to the audience, and it should be topical in terms of a current issue, or a recurring trend in society or culture.
Magnitude: The news must be significant, and it should be unusual or exceptional. It should involve a large number of people, or it should have a high potential for impact.
Relevance: The news must be of general interest, and it should be able to be followed by the audience. It should have an influence on their daily life, their business or their work, and it should be relevant to a particular group or nation.
Money: The news must be of interest to the audience, and it should include a variety of topics such as fortunes made or lost, school fees, taxes, the Budget, food prices, wage rises, economic crises and compensation claims. It should not be just large sums of money; it should also be small donations made by a little girl to a huge fund-raising event, or a story about the ill effects of a tax on food.
Most people agree that the news media, in particular newspapers, magazines, radio and television, is for information, education and entertainment. However, the entertainment can come from other areas such as music and drama programs on radio or cartoons and crossword puzzles in newspapers.