LESSON-1 COPY EDITING Introduction to Copy Editing/Copy Editor Objectives: The students will learn the meaning

and scope of copy editing/copy editor. How to deal with copies at hand in relation to time constraint and how it can be done effectively. Copy-editors work with copy coming from writers and reporters to prepare it for publication in their newspaper, magazine or website, linking up with editors, designers, picture editors, production staff and printers to move material from raw copy to finished page. Through exercises and discussion, participants will pick up the elements of all the basic skills needed for sub-editing. This will include: • text handling • style • spelling and grammar • writing strong headlines, stand-firsts and captions • law for subs • proof-reading • type • the role of the sub-editor Who should attend Reporters and other journalists wanting to get to grips with editing; editors wanting to understand what their subs are up to; writers wanting to learn to tighten up their own copy; freelances and staff journalists wanting to widen their job opportunities Qualifications A desire to pick up sub-editing skills English The study of English opens doors to many careers. English majors develop highly valued skills in oral and written communication, and the ability to think creatively as well as analytically. While English graduates have many opportunities for employment in fields that are "literary" in nature, they are by no means limited to these. This major is considered excellent preprofessional training for careers in law and administration. Law schools and MBA programs consistently place high value on the qualities developed in the English major: broad humane understanding as well as articulateness. These qualities are also

highly valued in training for federal service, public policy, and health services, in addition to the better known options of teaching and library science. Nature of the Work It is difficult to summarize the work of those with a degree in English due to the broad array of career options they pursue. Presented below are brief sketches of occupations that require the English major's skills in communication and analysis. Production assistant, editorial assistant and copy writer are examples of entry-level positions in publishing. Production assistants clip stories that come over the wire services' printers, answer phones, and make copies of material for news writers, editors, and program directors. They review copy for errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling. They check manuscripts for readability, style, and agreement with editorial policy. Editorial assistants perform research for writers and verify facts, dates, and statistics. They may help prepare material for publication or broadcast by arranging page layouts of articles, photographs, and advertising or by planning the use of films. They may also compose headlines, prepare copy for typesetters, and proofread the printer's galleys. Some editorial assistants read and evaluate manuscripts submitted by freelance writers or answer letters about published or broadcast material. Copywriters write advertising copy for use by publication or broadcast media to promote the sale of goods and services. Technical writers put scientific and technical information into readily understandable language. They may prepare engineering manuals, catalogs, parts lists, instructional materials and engineering reports. Technical writers often are part of a team, working closely with scientists, engineers, accountants, and others. Places of Employment Again, it is important to point out that English graduates are found working for a broad array of employers in non-literary as well as literary careers in business, industry and government. Nearly half of those in writing and editing positions work for newspapers, magazines, and book publishers. Substantial numbers also work on journals and newsletters published by business and nonprofit organizations, such as professional associations, labor unions, and religious organizations. Others write and edit advertising and public relations materials for advertising agencies, public relations firms, and large corporations. Some also work in radio and television broadcasting; others develop publications for federal, state, and local governments. Thousands of others work as freelancers writing articles, books and, less commonly, television and movie scripts. Wildest dreams of riches and fame can come true for writers, but most support themselves primarily with income from other sources. Technical writers generally work for firms manufacturing aircraft, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and computer and other electronic equipment. Firms in the energy, communications, and computer software fields also employ many technical writers. • An understanding of the role of the sub-editor

Another mistake that gives rise to great offense is crediting submissions incorrectly .. p748. An irate letter was received from the captain of the football team upon publication and the proofreader in question explained that yes. headlines.should be chosen to reflect the tone of the piece while trying to gain the readers attention. Headlines should be chosen with care and attention to the overall intent of the piece. Design – many subs pick up a modicum of layout skills. Editing is not a privilege but a duty. No. However this does not mean that a sub-editor should hesitate to alter an article if need be . titles and pull quotes decided and pages proofed. Student Publishing Guidebook This is where most of the shaping of the magazine content happens. but they have no right to impose how or in what form a given editor chooses to publish that work.• Acquisition of a level of competence in the basic skills needed as a sub-editor Further courses to consider Quark XPress – subs tend to be expected to know how to run the machines that publishers use. Feature writing – anything that improves your awareness of good writing bolsters your subbing skills. articles are shortened or occasionally lengthened and difficult sections recast. Mistakes made at the sub-editing stage can often cause more offense than any general editorial policy. Sub-Editing is the grayest area of magazine production. Sub-editing is best done with a careful eye for details and a light touch. Also photographs and illustrations are chosen.on one occasion several hundred eratta slips had to be produced when one national poet discovered that his work had been credited to a rival. Proofreaders should also have an eye to the general content of the article and not just for typos or grammatical errors. he had seen it. Each magazine will have its own house style. 42. but when checking grammar the following is useful in spotting the more common errors (reprinted from Physical Review Letters Vol. but the spelling was okay. 12. An author has the right to withhold permission to publish a work. Bad pull quotes are a very good way of annoying both authors and readers. Apart from the mechanical process of checking spelling and grammar. March 1979.. The editing process is integral to publishing. for example an article on women’s soccer ha d the Words "Great Tits!" inserted into the first paragraph as a joke during layout. Trigg): .it is sometimes necessary to almost completely rewrite a submission. enlarged and placed between paragraphs .text selected from the body of the article. both to the reader and author. George L. Clearly a wise sub-editor will tread gently in this area but the fact remains that a contributor is not (usually) the editor. Similarly pull quotes . for example an article on the violent oppression of Kurds living in the deltas of Iraq should not be titled “Marsh Mallows”.

If you find that your layout staff are willing to spend ten minutes just selecting the right font for a headline. 14) Its important to use apostrophes right in everybodys writing. A good source of information on good magazine editorial style is the By far the most visible part of the production process the layout stage can also be the easiest .if you don't do layout try not to be at that end of the table during po st-production drinks .1) Make sure each pronoun agrees with their antecedent. 7) Join clauses like a conjunction should. 21) Use parallel construction not only to be concise but also clarify. I think that an author when he is writing should definitely not get into the habit of making use of too many unnecessary words that he does not really need in order to put his message across. 16) Check to see if you any words out. which are not necessary. 19) About repetition. they are wrong. 9) About sentence fragments. 15) Don’t abbrev. 10) Don’t use run on sentences you got to punctuate them. the case of pronouns is important.) . 2) Just between you and i. 17) In the case of a report. Layout staff are usually people willing to use computers happily and who have a certain single mindedness about detail. 8) A writer must not shift your point of view. 4) Verbs has to agree in number with their subjects. the repetition of a word might be real effective repetition take. long hours and the knowledge that even if an infinite amount of time was available there would still be things which could be done. check to see that jargonwise. a writer should not use dangling modifiers. 6) Being bad grammar.or the hardest. 11) In letters essays and reports use commas to separate items in series. 24) Consult the dictionery [spell checker] to avoid mispelings. 5) Don’t use no double negatives. for instance the repetition of Abraham Lincoln. you really don’t want to find out. it’s A-OK. 13) Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in commas. 3) Watch out for irregular verbs which have crope into English. 23) Mixed metaphors are a pain in the neck and ought to be weeded out. 25) To ignorantly split an infinitive is a practice to religiously avoid. lay off the cliches. (A word of warning however . While it takes a reasonably short time to learn the basics of laying out a page you can spend a lifetime learning all the little tricks and wrinkles that can really make a magazine look worthwhile. 12) Don’t use commas. 22) It behooves us all to avoid archaic expressions. It is where Staff must battle with reluctant computers. 20) In my opinion. you know you have hired wisely. the difference between a humdrum layout and a great layout is often just a few subtle effects that no normal person would even notice individually. 26) Last but not least.if you don’t already know what the “The Font Game” is. 18) As far as incomplete constructions.

3) Bear in mind that although you know exactly the message you’re trying convey (hopefully). although less of a crime in longer texts. Now for specifics: For experienced staff . This can cause real damage and several hours or days to fix. We would reccomend getting your writers to submit copy either in Word 6. as text pasted into an e-mail has to be time-consumingly unpastes to remove the carriage-returns/line breaks. there is no excuse for sloppy work. 5) Be aware of the limitations of the production process. That said. ty pe styles and effects just because you can.0 form or Rich Text Format. A general point to all: do not alter system settings.0 and Adobe Photoshop. For example if you intend to output your magazine using a professional repro house. 7) Most magazines are printed using A2 plates. colour and finish of the paper used for your covers and inside pages. While sometimes unavoidable they are bad style. These are lines where either the first or last line of a paragraph falls on a different column or page from the rest of the paragraph. software confliction problems do occur. This will allow you to design style sheets and master pages in advance. but Office 2000 is round the corner so the problem is a never-ending one.Some general points about layout and page design before proceeding onto the specific system used in Pubs: 1) Keep it simple . install new software or use applications you have no idea how to operate without discussing it first with the Amenities Officer of Pubs. especially in a filthy ash and coffee -strewn office. Magazines have deadlines so be prepared to sacrifice perfection for expediency. not compete for the reader’s attention. As a very rough rule of thumb you can fit about 600 words of text onto an A4 page.We have recently upgraded our system to Apple Mac (G3s) running Quark XPress 4. a reader will be coming to your layout cold. Don’t use lots of different fonts. 4) Make backups of work in progress as often as you can remember and always backup before trying to print. resources and really wo n’t look very good when printed on the standard laser printer.usually. As floppy disks are notoriously easy to corrupt. Therefore when working out how many pages you’ll need. This is especially a problem when outside layout staff are brought in as they have a tendency to ‘ help us out’ by changing the system to the way they think it should be. As Trinity's computer facilities are split half and half between PCs and Macs and the outside world is more haevily weighted in favour of PCs. Consider also the weight. Our Macs have just had Word 98 installed. As attachments mind. 2) The last 30% of laying out a page takes 70% of the time. 8) Colour is expensive but a little spot colour can go a long way. 6) Make sure that before you begin laying out a document you have a page plan. The page design should reflect and enhance the content of the text. otherwise it’s a waste of time. Don’t forget to include the covers in your page count. 9) Watch out for widow and orphan lines. The . saving you much repetition of work. make sure its a multiple of four for A4 pages or two for A3 pages. Links to tutorials on these programmes can be found on our links page. Easy readability is essential. scanning in your photos directly into the document files is probably a good idea. it is advisable to get as many people to file copy by e-mail. No computer is perfectly stable and a complicated document can make a lot of demands on a system so protect yourself against frustration and the loss of valuable time and effort.

pull quotes and so on. Lets illustrate this with a simple example. While learning all the ins and outs of Quark takes quite a bit of time and experience the basics are outlined here. Items underneath a box will only be visible if the colour is set to none. The box above affects the box below through these attributes.current setup is finely balanced between the competing needs of all the users in Pubs as well as our resource limitations.. In the example on the previous page the main body text box was set to colour none to allow the backgound box with “Death” to be seen. For convience boxes are normally shown on screen with a solid or dotted outline depending on whether or not the box is selected or unselected. Look at the example on the opposite side (it is intended merely to show different aspects of a page layout and not as an example of good layout or writing!). > Background option. The key concept in Quark Xpress is boxes. such as white or red (white is the common default) or it can be transparant. Click on the picture to get a higher resolution scan As each item (an item being a box or a line) is created it is placed on the next level above the last item. Each box can have different settings for background colour.. body text. Each box floats own its on level ‘above’ the page and depending on whether or not it is in front of other boxes it can affect the contents of those other boxes. picture contrast. A box can either have an opaque background. i. while the circular box in the lower left hand corner had its background colour set to black. It is normal to set the contents of the lower box(es) to a shade of grey so as not to obscure the contents of the foreground box. Unless you specify otherwise the box itself will be invisible and only its contents (if any) will show when printed. Boxes may contain nothing and along with frames and lines can be active elements in the page design themselves rather than passive receptacles. If you could tilt the sample page a little to the side it would look something like the illustration below.e. Quark is a high end professional package that can be used to produce everything from black and white leaflets to books to full colour posters. The order of layers can be changed later if need be. frame (if any) number of columns and so on. The background colour setting is the more basic of the two. There are two types of box: text boxes and graphic boxes. The entire design and layout process in Pubs centres around using one Desk Top Publishing package: Quark Xpress. have colour none. Text boxes contain headlines. Graphic boxes contain illustrations and pictures. . Boxes interact with other boxes in two ways: with their runaround and their background colour. This setting is controlled using the Item > Modify.

Here are some frames have been put around the boxes): It is important to remember that although it is the runaround on i the top box which is modified its text is not affected. but none at all to those outside the tribe. If the runaround is not turned off the text will simply be squeezed out of the lower box. text not centering properly and so on. The problem here is usually one of culture. This also means that centred lines no longer centre in the middle of the lower box but centre between the runaround and the edge.the box can be repositioned on the page and so on. such as 'absolute perfection' and 'at the end of the day'.such as using the scanner .as in the “Death” example both the runaround must be turned off and the background colour set to none in the box above. This issue of Short Words has jargon as its theme. If the runaround is turned off. but Pubs will provide you with training if needed. The word itself is generally believed to come from the medieval French ('the twittering of birds'). Runaround does not affect the contents of picture boxes. Rather than flowing the text around the item. The runaround is the amount of white space that surrounds the box on top. We have . By selecting the content tool changes can be made to the contents of the box.image runaround. as writers find it in their interest to please their peers before their readers. It is used to describe words and phrases with which we feel uncomfortable.are generally learned ‘on th e job’.e. Controlling boxes and their contents is done through the Item and Content tools. At another are words that have a special meaning to immediate colleagues. Thus doctors end up writing for doctors and NHS managers for other NHS managers (usually theirs).examples (for clarity The runaround setting affects only text in the box below. The runaround is often the cause of unexpected occurences when using Quark. like queue jumping and litter. i. only the text in the box(es) below. The exact size of the runaround around the item may controlled and different sizes can be specified for the each side. Text lines run as far as the runaround and then stop.g. the text can be made to flow around the image inside the box. text will continue under the higher box. For example: Thus for text in one box to be visible under another box . a picture can be repositioned inside a box but the box itself does not move. is something we can all agree to dislike. Picture boxes can also have another form of runaround . e. Once you understand how to use boxes in Quark Xpress you will be able to begin doing layout. Their toolbar icons are shown (somewhat enlarged!) below: By selecting a box with the item tool changes made apply to the box or line itself . At one level are those flabby words and phrases that all should avoid. More advanced topics . Articles range from a collection of readers' most derided words to a review of a new book on NHS jargon. Jargon: is there anything we can do to stem the flow? Jargon.

and David Pencheon gives a list of buzz words that those sitting public health exams should sprinkle throughout their projects. Proof marks have more or less constant symbols from one newspaper to another. The. In that way you should be able to choose the words and phrases that they will be comfortable with . when he revises a story to incorporate new material. be avoided. whether they come from the iJ typewriters of reporters and rewrite men or from the several wire services.and unnecessary . however. with everything you write. Corrections which make a substantial contribution to the reader's understanding of the story should also be carried out Corrections which add a touch of polish to the story or substitute a . All stories destined for the newspaper.somewhat more felicitous phrase should. with the copy. proof is not the stage for' second thoughts'. The Copy Editor While routine proof-reading is largely concerned with making the type agree. the universal desk system actually was universal in the sense that it handled everything that case in. city editor and other editors read all the copy) The copy desk set up varies somewhat with individual papers. it may be necessary to make correction in the part of the story already in type to make it congruent. the copy desk often uses it to make changes of another sort.additions to the English language. but most papers nowadays adopt one of two general procedures: the universal desk system or the independent desk system. Nowadays. In the old days. . (Small papers do not have copy desks. The proof-reading symbols reasemble copy-reacting symbols in some instances but in many cases the one may not be substituted freely for the other. you define clearly your target readers. require! editing. Nevertheless. In a sense. For instance. Will reading this issue help solve the 'jargon problem'? Some of the words we list may sensitise you to some of the uglier .and jargon will no longer be an issue. Time and stress conditions in the composing room require that the editor consider the consequence of each proof mark he makes in terms of the magnitude of the correction and the time and labour needed to accomplish it at such a later hour. even on small dailies. the work is usually divided between the city desk and the telegraph desk. But this will only go so far: the only permanent solution is making sure that. This duty falls chiefly on the copyreader who sits on the rim of a : horseshoeshaped table-the copy desk.identified some useful websites. Changes which correct errors of fact are necessary. the copy editor must be able to use proof marks as an editing device. Between the they edit copy and write headlines for all "spot" news-everything except sports and financial coverage.

finance-business sports. This editor or the news editor glances through the copy. this is rarely the case. quickly gauges its relative importance. It requires more of a i special sort of mental agility and resilience than an elderly brain can encompass. seven editors with a crew of from. The job is much too exacting and specialized to allow of any other method of recruitment. sometimes called 41e desk man. As Chet Vonier comments' 'the good copyreader is captured young. telegraph. Has it news value? If it hasn't that. but Neil MacNeil in his book. The Times has also a separate desk for its International Edition. he forms general conclusions about the story in hand. On a big desk. the process of editing runs along similar lines. The work holus cut . The amount of this work varies on each paper and varies on each day.. rim man." is the anonymous and frequently unappreciated collaborator of the writer. and reserve news. Although the tradition persists that the copyreader is a former reporter driven I to the horseshoe desk by middle age. At the Times. if written as running matter. Is it accurate and fair? Inaccurate items are not wanted by any newspaper. obits-amusement society. each of whom has his own corps of copyreaders. Without Fear or Favor. determines the space it should occupy-200 words or a half or three-quarters of a column-and decides the type of headline.' Copy-readers generally are paid better than reporters. type of the copy and passes it along to one of his copyreaders who sits on the rim of his horseshoe. Newsmen who see his blue pencil lay their cherished prose have few good words to say for him. seventy to eighty men edit news designated as cable. The chances for advancement are good) as the copy desk is a reecruiting ground for office executives.attractions for men with editorial ability. the copyreader may edit from five to Len columns. On a busy night the words he sets down in his headlines. As he picks up the copy and reads. and their number is rapidly decreasing. might total about two columns. This work is mainly two-fold: the editing of the story and the construction of a suitable headline for it. His editorial function is to bring each news item that comes to him up to par. He suggests that the reputation of many a star reporter rests partly on the work done by this man in the green eye-shade who combed out the reporter's cliches and made his clauses march. Whether the system adopted be universal desk or separate desk. The . or "mechanic of the editorial room. city. indicates the newsman's true worth. in operation on a large scale at the New York Times. it's not worth printing. This copyreader. In each case the story goes to a "slot man" who sits at the head but on the inside rim of the horseshoe desk. allocates the news to different editors.The independent or separate desk system. Unfair items are wanted by few papers.

He writes" begin' t instead of "commence". The copyreader's use of the word "style" has nothing to do with literary quality. Arrangement. These r Clearness. capitalization. he writes "try" in place of "endeaver" He knows that by careful condensation one-quarter of the words can be omitted. Style. The best rule is to paragraph for ideas and not for mechanical reason Copyreaders also try to avoid being mechanical when it comes to the sub—head. The look of the column demands a sub-head every two sticks or a stick-and at least. Verbal frills may go but the meaning must remain. along with a number of words and phrases to be avoided. vary from paper to paper. If the item meets these qualifications. part first and the least important last.copyreader takes the responsibility for published inaccuracies. He then proceeds to check the copy's paragraphs and. One "and" is usually enough. Some of the frequently used symbols have been shown in "Our book Theory and Practice Journalism. use of numerals. . paper into legal difficulties has to have the danger spots eliminated. The sub-head is a line to be printer a type which differs from. Is it libellous? An item that contains words or implications that may get the . The copyreader aims to have subheads really mark divisions in the subject. Con4ensation. punctuation. He edits his copy along the foregoing lines by means of a set of standardized copyreading symbols which tell the typesetter what sections to omit. The copyreader must cut and condense each story to the length assigned to it. As practiced in newspaper offices condensation applies to words and not to ideas. abbreviations. supplies some su1r-heads. Is it complete? Is the treatment fragmentary and partial? Win it leave the. As he uses the word it refers to particular rules' which his paper has laid down for spelling. The copyreader's notion of logical arrangement differs froD1 that of the literary man. etc. when to spell a word out and when to contract. where transpose. It is based on the convention of the "lead' t which puts the important. reader up in the air? If so. if the story If sufficient length. its details must be rounded out. the copyreader starts his editing to fit his paper's requirements. Such usages. the body type of 'the article and is used to break up too solid look of a long column of type. He frequently condenses by substituting short words for long ones. The reader must have no difficulty in finding out just what the article means. and the like. or say about every 300 to 350 words.

Reed quickly notified that State Highway Patrol. 4 (up)-Juke Box Operator J. Roadblocks were set all over the State. and went into action. Hutto' gave chase "but lost the "death car" in Orangeburg. Jan.and he tries to have them : something new and not merely repeat what has been already told. Less than an hour later another flash came over the patrol radio networking. Akers. The ammunition was firecrackers. which drove away.C. of till former United Press and it is reprinted here in full through the courtesy of Mer T. giving him the car's Florida license number..C. The story as originally written and finalised read: Orangeburg S. Copy-reading in Action: Here is an example. It is in the form of a memorandum sent to the Division Managers and Business Representatives of all bureaus. Deputies meanwhile investigated the scene of the shooting. Inside they found five laughing college students-all very much alive. S.. 4. S. He stopped an reported the shooting to Sheriff George Reed. . State troopers swifty charted the course of the car. The gunman picked up the limp form and shoved it bad into the car. Frightened witnesses reported another identical shooting at Summerton. of copyreading 'in action from an expert source general office of the United Press Associations.E. editorial executive. 31 miles northeast of Orangeburg. They told troopers they were on their way back to Duke University from their homes in Florida and only meant to enliven the auto trip a bit by staging a few fake murders. They found footprints but no blood. The Patrol flashed the report to all stations by radio. Minutes later they swooped down on the "death car" on the highway 15 miles south of Sumter. Hutto was driving peacefully into Orangeburg last night when he saw a car loaded with men care to a halt In front of him! A man leaped out of the cart dragged another struggling man behind him whipped out a pistol and' fired twice. The "murder weapon" turned out to bean antique pistol. The second man stopped struggling slumped to the ground.C.

Troopers promised not to reveal their names. S. State troopers didn't think the "murders'" were funny. Minutes later they caught the death car 15 miles south of Sumter.. Reed answered that they were "just college boys having some fun" and old the troopers to let them go. Less than an hour later another urgent call went over the radio. The students promised not to "shoot" anybody else. The "murder weapon" turned out to be an antique pistol the ammunition firecrackers. State troopers charted the course of the car. Deputies at the scene found footprints but no blood.'. Jan-4 (up)-Juke Box Operator J. Witnesses reported an identical shooting at Summeerton. A man leaped from the car. Neither did the students when the irate patrolmen notified Sheriff Reed in Orangeburg that they were holding the pranksters for him if he wanted them. . The second man quit struggling and fell..C. Reed notified the State Highway Patrol. S. The patrol called all stations by radio. which was driven away. and in the accompanying reproduction we see the editor's pencil and copyreading symbols at work. In it they found five laughing Duke University students all very much alive. 30 miles northeast of Orangeburg. Here is how the official UP memorandum edited this story. anybody else. S.C. Hutto chased the "death car" but lost it He reported the shooting to Sheriff Geroge Reed and gave him the car's Florida license number.E. He dragged out a struggling man and shot twice with. The students said 'they were on their way back to school from Florida an only meant to enliven their trip with a few fake murders.C. but they let the student go when they promised not the "shoot'. Orangeburg. Hutto was driving peacefully into Orangeburg last night when he saw an automobile full of men stop suddenly. The patrolmen lectured the boys for a while at headquarters and sent them on their way.vas so funny. The gunman picked him up and shoved him back into the car.The troopers didn't think it . a pistol. Roadblocks were set up.

if he chose to 'handle' it that way. full of adjectives and bromides. but the situation doesn't necessarily call for an adjective. an automobile full .'" it's simpler and faster to say he saw '. The story actually ends after knows . copy reader had' three problems: ' 1. and inconsequential detail to copy reader came up with on paragraph in the place. first paragraph originally read that Hutto saw "a car loaded with met careen to a halt in front of him. "Another" is redundant in front of “identical”. The witnesses probably were frightened. "Excited" probably would have been more explicit. Note the ones taken out. Only minor changes are needed in 1he next paragraph. fourth and fourth paragraphs suffer from the same trouble. When doubt about an adjective cut it out. 2. Those are: why the . writer took too long to set the scene and used buy many. . The next paragraph about the activity of the state troopers contains two more bromides"went into action” and "swooped down”. once be: ."whipped out a pistol. To reduce the story so a telegraph editor could splash it in a page. and “roared away” Note.day trunk wire and is an example of' loosely-written story. arrives at their climax too late and then wanders Off into "just words". "Duke University was moved up and substituted for' “college" ––two birds. Here in detai1 is why the corrections . In the second paragraph the. . Few persons outside our own business know what a flash is.. was changed because the word means to tilt or tip which the car probably did not do_ "Loaded with men" is misleading. Breaking up the first :Sentence makes the paragraph more. 3. made: The. Presumable they were not' loaded into the car but got in of their own accord. To tighten up the story and thereby speed up the action. words. "Flash" is changed urgent call". "Careen". The third." "slumped the ground."Whether. There was no need to detail all the steps Hutto took to notify the authorities. By taking out the adjectives. The." "limp from".this paragraph but the reader will want to know at least three more details. readable.of men stop suddenly. of three-a considerable word saving-and again quicken the tempo.he saw it arid that’s the point so out comes the last phrase of the first sentence. "It is too long. were . the substitute phrases and words. He also wrote in four cliches.the automobile' stopped in from of Hutto was Immaterial. To cut out the excess words and bromides. with one stone.' Now Comes the climax paragraph.And the editorial reasoning that lay behind this expert copy reading? Here is quoted verbatim front the official UP memo: This news feature came off the .

Except on the most rural journals no word may be divided between one line and the next As the paper progresses in size. The style and size of type as well as the number of lines in the headline and determined by another editor before it' reaches the copy desk. it is extensive too He may borrow "nab from thieves” argot. His vocabulary. intelligent. sinful to end the first line of a headline with a preposition. "Art of the Headline Writer Chet Vanier indicates the restrictions under which the copyreader works. does both. He has a high regard for words. He knows that the 'headline must fulfill two requirements: it must attract attention to the story. other restrictions are imposed. headline.students played to prank-for fun-and how they did it-with an old pistol and firecrackersand how the case was disposed of-they went free. he will pirate "knockout" from the sports page and "grand slam" from the bridge 'table. Except in the more conservative papers. The short head boasts three advantages-it reads faster it writes faster. He strives to see to it that each headline he concocts. top-of the-column headlines on most newspapers is eleven or. joins the ranks of the creative artist With sh6rt . Fortunately for the. compass he can tell a while story. but is not seriously hampered by a belief in their inviolability. On others a copyreader may not begin a headline with a verb. On still other papers. A popular innovation-again to make reading easier and speedier-is the "down style" head in which only the first word and proper names appear in "caps". The rest is only excess wordage. Within such narrow limits. headline writer t the present day' trend veers way from the old strait-jacket style. an adjective or adverb has to be on the same line as the word' it modifies. On most newspapers it is regarded as. and ocasiona1ly droll. when he constructs a good . if -the is one of the experts of the trade. Although he works anonymously the copyreader. is highly selective and. it must announce the story's main facts. Another newcomer is the "kickerk" head. In his American Mercury article already noted. and "nuclear fission from the physicists. leaving the subject understood. twelve letters or spaces. Its frequent "gag" quality puts it along with the "teaser" head in the forefront of those . headlines have changed from all capitals to upper and lower case for the sake of greater readability.words and in short'. favoured for its typographical: impact. Each y The Present Day Trend-Shorter “Heads" The growing tendency today favours shorter and shorter heads. and it sets faster. Each line of the headline will accommodate a limited number of characters-an average count for . the headline writer Contrives to write captions which are informative. The newspaper copyreader works within the narrowest of all literary limits.

it requires a final "okay". Passed by this executive editorial desk and its place on the page's "dummy" duly noted. When two friends meet after sometime they exchange information which can be called personal news. it goes to the desk of the night city editor or in the case of the New York Times to the "bull pen' where at least three assistant editors sit and pontificate.): A newspaper may be judged pretty accurately by its headlines. amuse and shock its reader must. only the more conservative papers retain the "jim death". Everybody will agree that death makes news. THE CONCEPT OF NEWS NEWS is one of the best known commodities in today's world. use just the right word and avoid the bromide. the short line which meticulously separates decks and stories. it goes to the composing room to be set in type. the head writer will endeavor to get the picture in focus. This. like its' lesser confers. Letters written to friends and relatives carry what can be described as news by them. It is reserved by the New York Times to announce the outbreak of a world war. For this final scrutiny. this story. Inc. The use of the banner line-that page-wide head in large type illustrates Mr. As Allan Holcomb writes in Lata City Edition (Holt. . Everybody who understands a language and has access to mass media recognises it. its heads will display. One may find relics of a primitive system in remote tribal areas where people exchange local news during weekly markets just by talking to one' another. an intensive repertory of shockers and thrillers. A make-up editor may also see the story. has generally gone by the board along with the decks or banks it once separated. When a balanced news perspective is the idea. This kind of information exchange is continuing since early days of human society in one form or the other. Daily it screams across the sensational press to chronicle a run-ofthe-mill killing. The importance of this news is related to the importance of the person and for deadliness of the disease. If its aim is to. if it is a major or page one story. as well as a picture caption writer if any "art" is to accompany it on the page. The concept of news must have existed even before the beginning of the era of mass media. If a person dies of a disease or an accident it makes news. Rinehart.devices used today to lure readers into the body type. and Winston. Again. leaves the editorial side of the paper for the mechanical. the shopworn phrase and the wisecrack. However. After a story has been duly edited and headlined. Holcomb's contention. and inform them afterward.

But as even today we do not have a universally agreed definition of God. But as we see every day all events do not make news. Thus Bhagalpur Jail blindings made news several weeks after the event. even then it would have been big news."The amazing news of Charles at once were s'pread".four letters of the word news have been described as representing the four directions-North. History is 'also an account of important events. "newyes" in 1485 and evolved to "newes" in 1523. there is no definition of news on which everybody agrees. Such announcements even now dominate the news coverage in the newspapers.Mrs Indira Gandhi was assassinated. In this sense the concept of news may even be older than the concept of God. Further. but the biggest news value of that event was the person involved. activities of Coomar Narain and Ram Swaroop were going on for quite some time before they made news 'when' the account became available. an event itself is not news-it becomes news when its account is available. Radio and television stations become first targets in coups and those who snatch power from the old regime use these electronic drummers f 0. It was big news. In this case the importance of news is because of the disease. That news was important because of the importance of Mrs Gandhi-other factors were there. but if he dies of AIDS in a Madras hospital it will become news of not only national but of international significance. It may not appear in a newspaper but it will be news to some people. But even ordinary death of an ordinary old man will make news at least for those who know him and are related to him. In English it appeared as "newis" in 1423. The. East. Revolutions in transport and communication have led to various changes in significance and reach of the news but the basic concept is the same. The word NEWS! Though the concept is very old the word 'news' is relatively recent in origin. News can come from any of these directions. Before the era of newspapers and electronic media. But it relates . It was only after 1550 that it became "news" and even in 1622 there was Butler's Weekly Newes in London while in 1685 we had' such sentences as. If she had died of a heart attack or in an accident. Thus we can say that the concept of news in human society is as old as recognition of death as an event and its communication by any means to those whom the event would affect. If a person dies in a road accident in Madras it will be news in Madras. their first announcements. West and South. Public announcements by those in power were communicated to the people by various kinds of drummers. Only important and interesting events make news. radio and television in almost all countries irrespective of ideology. news was communicated by word of mouth. Similarly.

also make news.. Not only events but opinions also make news. Conflict: Actual conflicts and even the danger of conflicts make news as they tend to bring about major change. What the US press wrote about the Bhopal gas tragedy was news for Indian newspapers. Importance and interest are two factors that present unlimited variety and thus explain why an event is newsworthy for one newspaper or broadcasting station and not for many other newspapers and radio or TV networks. But conflicts of smaller dimensions like group or personal conflicts resulting in crimes. strike and demonstrations. What Richard Nixon said about the lndo-Pak war of 1971 made news more than a decade later. But this intuition. which should be called news sense.News is in a way current history. It is commonly believed that reporters identify news by intuition. event or opinion which is important or interesting". etc. . If nothing happens there will be no change. comments by important newspapers can also make hews for other newspapers. Tension and suspense often associated with conflicts are also regarded as news values. sub-consciously learn how to measure news values. Change: It is a basic news value. Even conflicting ideas and resulting debates make up news. Vijya Laxmi Pandit's account of the relationship of her brother. historians consult newspapers of yesteryears in the archives. why one news item becomes world news while another may be fit for only a local daily. Jawaharlal Nehru with Edwina Mountbatten appeared in news columns throughout the world. All wars and threats leading to wars have proven record of newsworthiness. Today's newspapers will be a source material for historians of tomorrow as. Coverage of the Indian prime minister's visit in the media of the country visited will make news in India. Editorial. but its account in media gives now is news. Identifying and measuring these values is usually called news sense. But the world is not static. What is happening today may go down in history. .people affected by this change the more important it is from the news point of view. The opinion of the man in the street about the budget makes hews. With these varying situations in mind we can attempt a definition of news: "News is an account of a recent. develops in news men who. Opinion of prime minister Rajiv Gandhi about arms race in the world makes news. Every moment happenings are different from the moment before. Bill if new facts about an event of historical significance are sought out today then it will make news. The bigger the' change and the more the . News values Importance and interest are often described as news values but in fact these represent the sum total of news values or intrinsic characteristics that distinguish news from nonnews.

The prime concern of a man is himself then he is interested in his neighbo_rhood. got into newspapers just because of their prominence. From laboratories after years of work emerge. Timeliness: It is also a basic news value as old news is no news. Fear of consequences of an event also makes news. Every event has consequences so has it causes also. News is a highly perishable commodity and therefore every medium tries to give the latest available to score a point over the other. Thus possible consequences of a nuclear war makes news and all efforts to avert it and failures or successes in that direction. but this particular news value is the emotional context of the news event. The cause of a hotel fire may be known immediately. it is news. but if it is not known all efforts to find out the cause and possible interpretations will make news. A big chunk of news in media is about those who are known. Consequence also serves as measure of conflicts. the cause of a newsworthy event also makes news. if an eminent scholar "says something on a problem it will have news value while the same remarks made by an ordinary person may go unnoticed.new devices. In a highly competitive world of journalism every medium tries to be first with news. Similarly. Eminence and prominence: Involvement of eminent personalities in an event adds to its news value and it is directly proportional to the prominence of the person. This old newspaper saying recognises the news value of the. All this and its various.5 Prominence is many a time built up by media. the more the news value. And then whatever they said or did.' It is also true of disasters of lesser dimensions like boat tragedies. even if it did not have any other news value. new remedies. The greater the consequence. It improves quality of life. make news. unusual-novelty. If this would have happened to a less known figure the importance of that event would have been reduced to that order. Cause: Like consequence. It will make news. Progress: Progress is also a news value as it is the positive result of efforts made by society. The more people it affects the greater the consequence. Thus. it is not news. dimensions make news. disaster and progress. but if a man bites a dog. Billa and Ranga and Rajnarain into prominence. Human interest: Almost everything in news concerns human beings. new inventions. Novelty: If a dog bites a man. proximity becomes key news value. Consequence: The immediate and long-term consequence of an event also makes news. Media had a major role in bringing Jarnail Singh Bindranwale. If the prime minister is visiting Madras his activities will get more space in the Madras edition of Indian Express as compared to the Chandigarh edition of the same newspaper. Proximity: News is meant for human beings. People were interested in them because they were familiar. Charles Shobhraj. When Mulk Raj Anand fainted while speaking at Lucknow it became national news. If other things are equal. Through routine struggles of life frequently emerge shining successes. Anything that appeals to everybody not because of interest in the subject but because everybody shares human . small acts of sabotage resulting in loss of life or property Of both. various theories and interpretations of Punjab crisis will keep on making news from time to time.Disaster: Be it a result of natural calamity like an earthquake or a volcano eruption or be it a man made' event like the Bhopal gas tragedy or the Kanishka crash-disasters always make news. A traffic jam in Bombay'will be more important for a newspaper published from Bombay but may not find a place in a Delhi newspaper.

determining the importance of an event. proofreaders or printers. If a sub-editor is punctual he will be treated with respect by his. For a subeditor this creative faculty is very useful as he can add sparkle to somebody else's copy and make it lively. Besides. A reporter with foresight can think ahead 'and prepare for eventualities. Punctuality: It is a good habit. the voluntary self-control or restraint that helps one to endure waiting. a tragedy or a triumph. They should not allow anything to go in news columns that should actually go as advertisement. Human interest is also involved w. a disaster. Self-discipline: One can achieve a degree of proficiency in sub-editing or reporting by systematic effort and self-control. . Besides. All event itlay have many or all of these news values and taken together these values determine which news story is more important than the other. It helps reporters and sub-editors in. With a little forethought sub-editors can plan their work so as to avoid tension and it results in better functioning of the desk. which should be printed or broadcast and which should be left out. co-workers. Many a time he has to tolerate other people's shor(comillgs and has to remain unperturbed by someone else's slowness or other quirks. suffering or any of the unpleasant vicissitudes of time and life. In this sense self-_iscipline suggests dedication and firm commitment. It is always better to be punctual and then wait than reach late and ask others-a rival-may misinform you or hide some important information. Farsightedness: An intelligent envisioning of the future helps newsmen in general. he may have to face the problem of backlog of copy which he will it have to clear under the pressure of deadline. They should not fail to check even reporters' copy for such foul play. imaginative headlines attract the reader and improve the quality of a newspaper. provocation.". At the desk too punctuality pays. Imagination: This basic mental faculty helps reporters in writing better stories that retain the reader's interest. If he is late he will irritate them and spoil the working atmosphere. public relations men and product advertisers keep < on trying to take them for a ride. Patience: It is a quality which helps a reporter in a big way for many a time almost daily he has to test his patience. Crime stories often have a human interest angle that makes then readable. Human interest content of stories is higher when ordinary persons are involved in extraordinary situations-an adventure. The quality helps them in identifying processes and people who will be important in future. Reporters can watch such processes and cultivate people who may become important news sources in the future. They have to put up with many annoying situations everyday vis-a-vis reporters. Patience also helps sub-editors as they work long hours in trying conditions. Sub-editors should also be careful for some clever politicians. hen it depicts extraordinary persons in ordinary situations. For reporters it is a must for if they are not punctual they may miss something for which they may have to depend on secondary sources. Human interest is the element with which the reader identifies anything familiar that stirs his feelings. Most of the time a reporter waits for someone or something and patience gives him the willingness to wait without becoming disgruntled or anxious. It helps in journalism as in any other field. injustice.experience has news value.

but a news story is always based on facts. News story structure: Let us have a look at a typical news story. History is also based on facts but it deals with things of the past while news stories are on current events. THE news items that appear in newspapers are also called news stories. authenticate and excercise his power of deduction to get a good story. a news story is normally written in inverted pyramid style. This will help hIm in developing contacts that are so essential for news gathering. The inverted pyramid style has developed in journalism over the years. It helps the readers who don't have enough time to read the whole story. An other things being equal reporters need additional qualities to deal effectively with an sorts of people they meet in the field. He should go to his news sources as often as possible for such constant contacts help him get news. the most important facts come first followed by other facts in order of significance. Sub-editors should have better command over language as they improve what reporters write. He should have an understanding of human behaviour and emotions. upset or offend them. Reporters need a fair amount of assertiveness and aggressiveness to be successful in their career. . Good and efficient human beings make good and . They have to make extremely fine distinctions while writing or editing copy. alertness and dedication to the task and wary watchfulness. A meek. should enjoy moving around and should not hesitate travelling distances to get stories when required. It is more important for reporters for they are more exposed to temptations as compared to sub-editors. Fearlessness and frankness: These qualities help reporters in asking unpleasant questions and taking risks to find out truth. question. He should be considerate of others and should be careful not to embarrass. that is. A sub-editor should insist on perfection and should love his job for he can make or mar the newspaper.efficient sub-editors and reporters. Their jobs require painstaking exertion of intense care and effort. Tactfulness: A reporter should be tactful. Initiative: A reporter works in the field should have an outgoing nature with initiative and drive. _ These qualities are basically qualities of good and' efficient human beings.probe. and should have a nature that relishes variety of experiences. He should have the ability to handle sensitive people and situations gracefully without causing hurt or angry feelings. It also helps sub-editors who can easily discard as much of the story from the tail without affecting its readability. In literature stories may not have their basis in actual events. Nobody gives a story on a platter. A reporter should have flexible and sociable personality . A mobile reporter is seldom caught napping when a major story breaks. Diligence: Reporters and sub-editors should be diligent. He.Integrity: It is a virtue in its_lf and implies undeviating honesty and strict adherence to a stern code of ethics. The reporter will have to . . Further. This human quality is important for journalists. Mobility: A reporter should be mobile. These qualities will help him get aquainted with news sources and get stories from them. retiring or shy person is not fit for reporting. He may be good at his desk.

London. when asked about reports thaF the separatists had appealed to Britain and certain other countries to rccognise "Khalistan" .!. May 1 is the date line. the question of recognising "Khalistan" did not arise." is the intro. May 1 (P. It is put at the head of the story and gives an idea to the newspaper reader about the subject of the story.T.T.S. The rest of the story is called body of the story. The body of the story will automatically follow in the inverted pyramid style. A good intro is prerequisite of a good story. which they had proclaimed in Amritsar three days ago. (The Tribune.T. you really do half of the work on a news story if you write a good intro. For example.NO UK RECOGNITION FOR KHALISTAN London.) is credit li_e. he added. It tells the reader the place and the date of the news story. Intro gives the most important information which is contained in the story and therefore it is the most crucial part. The newspaper has published this story which was supplied by news agency Press Trust of India and by putting "(P. which they had proclaimed in Amritsar three days ago.I. Sometimes the name of the reporter or correspondent appears below the headline with a By or From. Chandigarh. Therefore. spokesman said the unity and territorial integrity of India were central to peace and to the well-being of the whole region. "The British Government today rejected the plea of Sikh separatists for recognition of 'Khalistan'. " It should contain highest quantum of news value. In the above example. Karnic" or "By Kanwar Sandhu". (P. The first paragraph of the story is called intro or lead. Elements of news story Basic elements of a news story can be found by asking and trying to find answers to six basic questions popularly known as the five Ws and one H. Past elections in Punjab had demostrated that the people did not support secession.)" the paper acknowledges the source of the story and this gives the credit to the news agency. The five Ws are-What? When? Where? Who? and Why? and the H is How? There was a time when journalists were supposed to answer all the questions in the . "From V. May 2. 1986) No UK Recognition for Khalistan which appears in bold type is the head line.I. It is termed by line. The proverb-Well begun is half-done-goes very well in this case.)-The British Government today rejected the plea of Sikh separatists fm recognition of "Khalistan". A foreign office.

(i) Simple lead involves a single incident. Chandigarh. according to news value. If a reader has to look over a sentence a second time to understand it. while the same paper presents different stories in different ways. the intro could be simple or complex. Any two reporters doing the same story will write it differently and this explains the variety. This variety is obvious to everybody who reads newspapers carefully as the same news story is presented in different ways in different newspapers. A test for elements of news and their proper order could be provided with four letters from 'news' as keys: N for newsworthiness-does the story continued in news values? E for emphasis-does the intro contain the most important and interesting fact? W for the five Ws and the H--do their answers exist in the story? S for sources of information-does the story identify or imply the source where it is necessary? Types of intros or leads Newsmen deal with a very wide range of subjects and everybody has his own way of presenting things. Based on the number of incidents involved. For a complex event like police action in the Golden Temple Indian Express.intro. Then. A story may not have answers to all of them but all these questions should be asked to identify the basic elements of a news story. Three other questions could be Who. but there should be no compromise on clarity of expression. ' An intro may be in reply to one or more or all of these questions. gave a simple lead: . loss of clarity which at times confused and irritated the reader. But slowly it was discovered that it resulted in over-crowding of the opening para. the most important element should come in the intro." Thus there is no hard and fast rule about these Ws and Hand their indusion in the intro or lead. Simple lead is very common in newspapers and should normally be favoured as it is easy to write it clearly. there are innumerable ways of writing intros and leads. Even if the event. answers to them can usually be accommodated in the later paragraphs. may have several different incidents. Recently published style book of News Agencies Pool of NonAligned Countries has this to say on this subject. then it cannot make a good intro or lead. Why and How? But they do not-necessarily arise in all stories. the intro takes account of a single incident. There are various ways to classify intros or leads depending on different criteria. Except where they themselves form the cardinal point of a story. "Basically a news story must answer the three Ws: What? Why? and When? As a rule the answers to these should find place in the opening paragraph. Therefore.

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