Lecture- News Value and News-Worthiness- How do Occurrences become news

Lecture- News Value and News-Worthiness- How do Occurrences become news

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10/20/11 News Value and News-Worthiness: How do Occurrences become news? Proximity & Ethnocentricity Events that are proximate (close to us) and events that reflect our ethnocentricity (our own cultural values and cultural assumptions) are more likely to become news TED Talk – events that are further away from US are less likely to become news events/occurrences – news focuses on regional news Iraq – expands as a source of news because we’re there, we’re at war; topical to us Africa – almost nonexistent in the way news is framed Ethnocentricity – alters news slightly because it tells us that we’re also interested in news that has to do with us Subway strike, Occupy Wall Street, bad weather event, soldiers, Americans abroad Example: Bus crash in Mexico – not news in America unless perhaps four American students were killed in the crash “If it bleeds, it leads” as long as it’s American Both geography and culture Unusual/unexpected/rare Ordinary things don’t become news – news should be about things that are unexpected, calamitous News analysts; need background assumption of what is normal Example: US rape is a more common crime than murder Murder – “If it bleeds, it leads” – rare Rape almost never gets reported in the news – maybe because it’s more common? Only reported as news when there is evidence that it’s a serial rapist; if the situation is shocking The news can report so many things so they’re always making decisions about normalcy and rareness
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Violence in school, violence towards women News rarely touches the question of domestic violence even though it’s an epidemic in the country (women, children); only shown as a feature piece, not a major event Maybe because it’s almost normal Timely, finite events Likes to report things that happen – have a beginning, middle, and end Bus crash, press conference, voting in congress News has a lot more trouble reporting events that are important but have a longer time horizon Example: environment – how you are going to report minute changes in sea level, soil erosion, etc; doesn’t fit the classic framing of the events that are recent and ongoing Green Peace – environment stunts Creating an event with a beginning, middle, and end in the hopes that news organizations would report and make a story out of the event To report a disruption, staging a spectacle Personalized vs. Abstract News like stories that it can anchor around people Example: global warming/environment is an abstract idea People climbing smoke stacks, etc are actual events; more personal News starts to frame stories in terms of people who are poor instead of talking about the economic system Personalizes the events News focuses around people who have status and authority Elites when their nations or people tend to be the focus of news You or me – “unknowns” – only like to become news only if something tragic happens to us; victim of a crime, bystander of a major event
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Lecture- News Value and News-Worthiness- How do Occurrences become news

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