What News is Good News?

| 1 Comment

Quotes from Dr. Jerz:

"Unusual events are news worthy"

"Mayor naps at work"

"Visiting Pope loses dollar in vending machine"

The above quotes are from Dr. Jerz's "Newsworthiness" sound recording. He mentioned several examples that people would find not important for the news. One very important concept that I learned from this recording is that if an article or news piece is out of the ordinary, then the news will love it. It almost has to be weird or have not happened for a long time in order for the news to like it and, therefore, the viewers.

Why does the news have to have uncommon events? Why can't it have normal and happy ending events?

Did you ever notice how the news hardly ever reports on good things, but quite the opposite - negative events. If someone runs naked across a football field, then I bet that would make the news because it hasn't happened in a long time and/or is uncommon.

The news has set standards for what it reports and what it does not report. A great survey, to support this topic, would be to have news companies send out questionnaires asking people about what they find newsworthy and why. I bet we would get a wide spectrum of answers!

Click here for the web page devoted to Newsworthiness.

1 Comment

I always used to get annoyed with that as well. When it really comes down to it, though, how many people would be interested in the news if it was all good news? As Dr. Arnzen stated on numerous occasions in The Writing of Fiction course last fall, only trouble is interesting. While news stations' and papers' main functions are to inform, they have to keep people interested in order to inform them. Only uncommon events are interesting because they don't happen every day--they aren't part of the mundane flow of everyday life.

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This page contains a single entry by Derek Tickle published on August 31, 2009 7:06 PM.

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