What Is News?


News is information about current events, obtained quickly and passed on to the public. It may be broadcast on television or radio, printed in newspapers or magazines, posted online or yelled across a classroom. News is generally considered to be important, exciting or interesting and should be relayed as soon as possible. Its roots are in the fourteenth century Latin word nova, meaning new things. There are many different kinds of news, from celebrity gossip to weather reports to political happenings.

There are a variety of ways to get your news, but some of the best sources are websites and newsletters that provide a short, concise and unbiased overview of current events. Signing up for a few good ones and reading them regularly will help keep you informed. Using social media is also a great way to find and share news articles that interest you, and it can help you connect with other people who have similar interests.

Most people will agree that the main job of news is to inform and educate. But it can be entertaining as well, whether through drama on the screen or in a newspaper’s cartoons or crossword puzzles. It is often said that what is newsworthy varies from society to society. For example, a man killing a dog would be newsworthy in some societies, but not in others where dogs are eaten.

The classic definition of news is that it explains who, what, where, when and why – the five Ws – but other elements can also make newsworthy events. For example, human interest stories can be very newsworthy. They might involve a famous person, such as a film star or politician; the personal life of an ordinary person, such as their spouse or children; their fortunes made and lost; or something unusual, such as a sudden and unexpected event.

Another source of news is the environment – how it affects us, how we can impact it and how we are managing it. This can include weather events, pollution levels, the availability of food and water or natural disasters such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.

Business, education, health, fashion, sport, entertainment and politics are other common topics for news. Art news can be especially interesting, such as a discovery that an expensive painting thought to be by a famous artist is actually a forgery.

Most news articles are geared toward a particular demographic, which can be as broad as a whole city or as specific as a particular age group or gender. This can be obvious, such as in a newspaper article about a school function that is open to the entire community, or less so, such as a story on local zoning laws that affects only a small business area. Knowing the audience will help the writer craft an article that will be most interesting and informative. It will also ensure that the facts and details reported are accurate. This is particularly important in science and medical news.