What Is News?
News is objective information regarding current affairs. This can be given through a number of media: print, radio, television, postal services, wire services, online broadcasting, or by the oral testimony of witnesses and analysts to ongoing events. In popular use, news is also used to mean the general reporting of significant or noteworthy events that have general public interest. For example, a news report on a natural disaster or the latest in a person’s death would fall under newsworthy material.
The nature of the news is determined by its objective. News is classified as real, serious, popular, or non-public information depending on the purpose of delivery, whether it is intended to disseminate facts or opinions, promote a specific industry, or monitor the actions of a public figure. All news is subjective. The public’s reaction to any given event is a direct reflection of the newsworthiness of the information at hand.
The media used to deliver news has a direct impact on the newsworthiness of that news. Reliable sources such as newspapers, television stations, radio stations, magazines, and web sites are reliable sources of news because they are known to deliver factual data and non-biased opinions. They also often publish original, unbiased material. Sources that are perceived as unreliable are less well-known and may not have the ability to deliver the same level of data or non-propaganda-style opinions. Major publications such as Fox News and CNN, however, are considered too unreliable to be considered real news outlets and their content is almost always opinion based.