News is information about current events. It is communicated to the public through a variety of media such as print, postal systems, broadcasting and electronic communication. News provides a social and political framework to understand events in the world around us, keeping people informed of what is going on locally and internationally. It is also used to educate the audience, providing explanations and teaching about topics such as politics, science, culture, economics and more.
It is a vital part of any society and plays an important role in our daily lives. Most of us consume news regularly through a variety of media and sources, including newspapers, television, radio and the internet. News is often a source of opinion and debate, as well as entertainment and enjoyment.
While there are many opinions about what makes news, it is generally accepted that stories must be new, interesting and significant. They must have a human element and be about something that is relevant to the audience. They must be told quickly and in an objective manner.
Other criteria that are often applied to news selection include the impact on the reader, exclusivity and shareability. Impact is a key driver when choosing which stories to print and broadcast as it determines the number of people who will read or listen to the story, as well as how long they will be engaged for. Exclusivity is the degree to which a story is exclusive to the particular news organisation, for example the result of an investigation, survey or poll that has not been published previously. Shareability is a measure of how likely a story is to be shared on social media platforms.
The role of the audience is also becoming increasingly important in the process of defining what constitutes news. Research is showing that audiences are selecting and disseminating stories to their networks as well as influencing journalists’ own news selection decisions (Tien Vu 2014; Welbers et al, 2015).
In the modern world of fast-paced media, it can be easy to lose sight of what is actually happening in the real world around us. To counter this, it is recommended that we seek out a variety of different sources and methods to keep up to date with the latest news. One way to do this is by signing up for a newsletter like The Skimm, or using a news app that tailors your stories based on what you are most interested in. Alternatively, you can try listening to podcasts that explain the news such as The New York Times The Daily or Now This News. Another option is to try reading or watching news in a language you are learning. Good sources for this are The News in Levels and Breaking News English, which provide articles graded based on the level of difficulty and highlight vocabulary that might be helpful to you.