Site MapHelpFeedbackChapter Summary
Chapter Summary
(See related pages)


Differences between Broadcast and Print Journalism
  • Broadcast journalism is neither better nor worse than print journalism: It's just different.
  • Print provides a level of depth, context and sheer information that TV and radio newscasts can't supply.
  • Broadcast journalism, through the power of dramatic video and engaging audio, offers emotional appeal, realism and immediacy that print can't.
  • Watching or listening to a news broadcast generally requires less intellectual effort than reading a complex news story in a newspaper.
  • Broadcast journalism, critics say, treats news as entertainment, evading complex issues while sensationalizing conflicts, crimes, car chases, etc.
  • But, whether you're a print journalist or a broadcast reporter, your goal remains the same: Gather all the information you can and then tell your story in a clear, compelling way.
How a Typical Broadcast News Story Comes Together
  • On radio
  • On TV
All the News That Fits—and That's Really Not Much
  • Most broadcast news stories are brief, extremely brief.
  • Broadcast stories are measured in minutes and seconds.
  • Most half-hour newscasts contain fewer words than one typical newspaper page. As a result, broadcast news is concise, but shallow; fast-paced but superficial.
  • What's in a half-hour newscast: Results from two major surveys of local TV news


In Different Media, Stories Require Different Styles
  • Writing for broadcast is not the same as writing for print. The style and syntax differences are subtle, yet substantial.
  • A story with compelling audio or video becomes more newsworthy than one without—no matter how well-written that story is.
Ten Tips for Broadcast Newswriting
  • Use a friendlier, more conversational tone.
  • Keep it short, simple, and easy to follow.
  • Don't structure stories in the inverted-pyramid form.
  • Use the present tense as often as possible.
  • Contractions are acceptable, even for hard news stories.
  • Attributions and quotes require different treatment.
  • Add phonetic pronunciation wherever necessary.
  • Use punctuation to help—not hinder—the delivery.
  • Avoid abbreviations and symbols.
  • Numbers: Round them off and spell them out.
What a Typical Broadcast News Script Looks Like
  • If you're writing a story for someone else to read, your script must be formatted, and formats vary form station to station.
  • Radio journalism may be the most challenging form of news reporting.
  • You can't rely on graphics and images as TV reporters can.
  • You can't write long, descriptive sentences and stories as print reporters can.
  • The best radio reporting is snappy, yet eloquent; conversational, yet concise; friendly yet authoritative.
Tips for Creating Radio News Stories
  • Write to your bites.
  • Make every word count.
  • Focus on people.
  • Read your stories aloud.
  • Record natural sound, too.
  • Paint word pictures.
It Takes Practice to Sound like a Pro
  • Record yourself.
  • Adjust your delivery.
  • The most common problems can be avoided:
    • speaking too quickly or slowly
    • emphasizing the wrong words
    • limiting your vocal range
    • stumbling over words
  • Study the pros.
  • Practice.
Some Common Radio News Terms & Jargon
  • Important terms and definitions
A Fire at the Yacht Club: Covering Breaking News on the Radio and in Print
  • A comparison
  • It's not simply radio with pictures. TV journalism requires a unique approach.
  • In two critical ways, TV reporting differs from all other news media:
    • You talk into a camera. Live, and without notes.
    • You depend on video. Words are crucial, but images rule.
Some Advice for Beginning TV News Reporters
  • Collaborate.
  • Write to the video.
  • Don't overload with facts.
  • Engage viewers' emotions.
  • Look professional.
Video Interviewing Tips
  • Find a location.
  • Get to the point.
  • Maintain eye contact.
  • Rephrase and re-ask questions.
  • Watch for good sound bites.
  • Avoid "stepping on" sound bites.
  • Remember to shoot cutaways.
Some Common TV News Terms & Jargon
  • Important terms and definitions
Common Forms for TV News Stories
  • Reader
  • Voice-over (VO)
  • Voice-over to sound on tape (VO/SOT)
  • Package

Harrower, 1eOnline Learning Center

Home > Chapter 9 > Chapter Summary