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-editing or correcting error made by the reporter.

Duties of a Copyreader
d e l e t e
Errors in fact Opinion, unnecessary adjectives, editorializing statements in news Verbal deadwood, redundancy Technical terms, jargon in news Those contrary to law and good taste


d e l e t e
Errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation, usage, organization Errors in unity, coherence, emphasis

Errors in style

A good copyreader is


Checks, confirms, facts and figures, dates and time Verifies names, sees totals tally

A master of detail, of broad knowledge A master writer, a super reporter

Skillful in the use of words, sentences, paragraphs Writes concisely

Careful, patient, creative, and can distinguish sound inference from editorializing Meticulous


Willing to read long articles word for word One must know facts of the story

High sense of grammar and wide vocabulary Critical eye

Can easily detect errors Especially in making copyreader marks


Knowledgeable on appropriate symbols

For referencing of facts

QUALITIES OF A GOOD COPYREADER These qualities are not developed overnight; these are attained through constant practice and learning from own mistakes. The talent in writing prospers when it is nurtured.

Commonly-Used Symbols
Copyreader and journalist understand a special language, made ,mostly of symbols, to represent certain actions on revising articles. Some of them are as follows:
Used to insert punctuation or words (triple) Used to capitalize certain words/letters Used to form paragraphs

Caret Underscore Paragraph Circle Transpose Sharp

Sept. 16-17, 2006

bye good

Used to spell abbreviated words

To interchange the position of words/letters Used to end the story

Some Copyreading Examples

Letters and word changes

Those b oys close up space

They call her Sibuyas Queen because. (quotation mark) Mr. Valdez said goodbye (comma)
Numbers and Abbreviation

Ill see you in Sept. (spell out) Doctor Jekyll (abbreviate)

Give me 2 bananas (spell out)

h Pamp let insert letter h himself Avail of insert word

Punctuation Marks

Some Copyreading Examples

You Are the sUnshine of my life was not untrue (delete) Judgement (delete letter within the word)

Developed our sskills (delete letter before/after the word) Meronbatayongmiryenda? (put space)

Other forms of type

Mayoyao, Philippines ( capitalize whole word)

The quick brown dinosaur jumps over the lazy teacher. (indent or paragraph)

The story is not over more (story unfinished)

One girl came (ignore correction)

Headline Writing
The news is basically a story, and like a typical story, news also have titlesthe Headline. Headlines immediately suggest to the readers what the news is all about, so they may get interested with it. It also sets the mood of the reader towards the news; to alarm, to pacify, or to just inform the reader.

Complex Monumental Terminated Witness Purchase Utilize Majority Reside Procure Proceed Contribute Request Endeavor Summon Category Prevaricate Incarcerate Inaugurate Facilitate Inundate Criticize Enumerate Conference Investigate Welcome Family Connect Silent Capture Reject Approve Customary Demise Exceedingly Expensive Police

Simple Big Ended See Buy Use Most Live Get Go Givr Ask Try Call Class Lie Jail Start Help Flood Blast Cite Confab/gab Grill Hail Kin Link Mum Nab Nix Okay Usual Death Very Dear Cop

Facilitate Concerning Conflagration Beverage Acquaint Proceed Proliferation Subsequently Edifice Currently Commence

Help About Fire Drink Tell Go Spread Later Building Now Begin

A good Headline Checklist

A Headline does have a purpose, and for it to be effective, it has to fulfill that purpose. To check whether a certain headline has achieved such, the following must be looked into: A headline: Answers many Ws as possible Should summarize the news story Should catch attention Should be grammatically correct Is balanced, fair and in good taste Is active rather than passive Uses short familiar words Uses only commonly accepted abbreviations
Verbal Deadwoods and other Words to Avoid Verbal Deadwoods are words which unnecessarily repeat the same idea: repeat it all over again for the second time around Vague words are those which only arouse more questions in the part of the reader. Tragedy- What kind of tragedy?

Some verbal Deadwoods For the reason that-because At the present time-now Tendered is resignation-resigned Affixed his signature-signed Told his listeners-said United in holy matrimony-married Used for fuel purpose- fueled Held a conference-met In the immediate vicinity-near Was able to make his escape-escaped The words in italics should be omitted 1. Advance prediction 2. Fatal killing 3. Definitely decided 4. New recruits 5. Free gift 6. A period of two weeks 7. Past history 8. Final conclusion 9. Dead body Some vague words Mishap- tragedy (fire, explosion, drowning), or accident (collision, fall from a building) Rites- ceremony (wedding, mass) Raps- legal action (suit for damages, libel, criminal case) Docs- documents (deed of sale, certificate, treaty) Area- community (neighborhood, village, town, city)

Steps: Writing the Headline

The proper headline can be written only after the entire news is finished. Here are the basic steps in writing headlines:
Underline the keywords- what are the most important places, people and events in the story? Write the summary of the news using the key words- create a couple of statements using those underlined words. The sentences formed need not be perfect; just make it to a point that it will make some sense. Divide according to unit of thought- separate the whos, the whats and so on. Substitute simple & effective synonyms- remember that your readers are not scientists. Keep your words simple. See if they follow the rules of construction- observe proper tense, subject-verb agreement, etc.

Other tips
Dont use the articles A, An, The- this only waste space. The Headline would still make sense even without them anyway.

Use numbers only if important- dont include the figure if theres only 1 peso involved.
Minimize punctuation- it is not a formal sentence, so perfect punctuation unnecessary. Use short familiar words Use only commonly used and accepted abbreviations- dont use B.C. for Baguio City!

Lecture presentation ROGER S. SEBASTIAN, master teacher 1 NVGCHS Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya