News is information about current and interesting events which has been obtained in a fast, accurate, objective manner. News may be published in printed or electronic form and must be presented according to a set of ethical rules and guidelines. It may be used for a variety of purposes, including entertainment and education. A typical article will present the main facts in an event and provide links to more detailed information if required. The content of a News item can be influenced by the political, social and economic factors at play in the country where it is written. It can also be influenced by the beliefs and biases of the journalist and the editors of the publication.
Different societies have differing views of what is important and will therefore influence the content of news items. For example, in a society where dogs are eaten, it might not be newsworthy that one has been killed, but in another where dogs are pets, this is likely to be a major issue. The importance of a particular event will also vary depending on how close to home it is for the people involved. For example, a coup in a neighbouring country is likely to be more significant than one which occurs in a faraway land.
Historically, news has been transported by word of mouth or via print, broadcast and film. The advent of modern communication technologies, such as the Internet and mobile phones, has changed the way in which news is obtained and transmitted. It has also allowed for the growth of citizen journalism, whereby ordinary people can report their own observations and opinions on a subject which might otherwise go unnoticed.
The most important element of a news story is the headline, which must be catchy, eye-catching and evoke an emotion or curiosity in the reader. This is the first thing that readers will see and should therefore be a good representation of what the whole article will contain. The headline should be written to conform to Associated Press style guidelines unless the publication specifies something else. Similarly, the byline should be inserted at the top of the article and should identify the author of the piece.
The body of the article should be structured to provide the reader with key information in the order which is most useful and logical. This usually means putting the most important information at the beginning of the article, with each subsequent paragraph providing less and less detail. This will encourage the reader to continue to the end of the piece.
The last section of a News article should include any opinions the writer has on the subject matter and may also include a personal opinion or perspective on the event described. This can help to add depth and interest to a piece and can also be useful for students writing essays on the topic. Opinionated news sources such as blogs and the opinion sections of magazines and newspapers are an excellent supplement to mainstream news and can give the reader a more balanced picture of what is going on in the world.