News is information that is new and important. It may be broadcast on television or radio, printed in newspapers or posted online, or yelled across the classroom. News can be political or social, about the weather or natural disasters, about wars or crime, or about celebrities or sporting events. News can also be about things that have happened in the past, or will happen in the future.
The news media decides what is newsworthy by using a variety of criteria. These are often referred to as the five news values: newness, significance, impact, authority and curiosity. A story must meet all of these to be newsworthy. If it does, then it is likely to be widely shared and discussed. This means that the story is going to be of interest to a wide range of people, and will likely have a significant effect on those who see it.
What is newsworthy depends on what people are interested in, and this varies from culture to culture. The most common interests are:
People want to know what is happening in the world around them, and what might affect their lives. This includes international events, such as coups and conflicts in other countries. People are also interested in the economy, which includes food prices, employment and wages, and inflation. People are concerned about the environment, so stories about pollution and environmental destruction are newsworthy. People are interested in health, so news about doctors and hospitals, medicine, traditional remedies and diseases are of interest. People are also interested in entertainment and celebrity, so gossip and rumours about famous people are newsworthy. People are interested in the arts, so news about theatre and cinema, music, art and carving are of interest.
There is a great deal of competition for the attention of the news media. This is particularly true in the electronic media, where a wide range of channels compete for viewers and advertising revenue. It is therefore important for news organizations to be able to identify and focus on the most interesting and newsworthy stories. This requires a high level of professionalism and a good understanding of the media.
A key factor in determining the newsworthiness of a story is the source. News sources that are reputable and well-established will be able to provide factual and reliable information. They will also be able to point out any bias in their reporting, so that the reader is aware of what they are reading and can judge whether or not it is worth further investigation.
Reliable news sources have professional websites and adhere to a set of rules that make it easy for readers to find what they are looking for. They will also be able to present different viewpoints on the same story, which is useful in helping people to understand the context and implications of the news they are hearing. They will also provide links to other news sources, so that the reader can check for themselves whether or not a story is based on valid information.