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Justification of News


Importance of the Make-Up

The arranging of the material on the several pages of the
newspaper is done under the direction of the editors.
This arrangement, particularly of the front page, plays a very
important role in the success of the newspaper.
The best arrangement is that in which the important news
stands out prominently, and can therefore be most easily
A symmetrical balancing of the headlines, half-tones and
cartoons adds to the attractiveness and readability of the

Halftone and Cartoon

Principle of Contrast

Large heads are alternated at the top of the

column with smaller heads so that the large
ones will stand out in contrast with the other
columns of less prominence

With heads not at the top of columns, effort is

made to secure contrast by some form of
alternation: e.g., cuts or cartoons.

Principle of Symmetry
In an eight-column page, some symmetry is often maintained
by means of cuts.
Many papers do not attempt to have perfect balance on the
first page, because of the desire to have the daily cartoon or
a cut at the top of the right-half of the page where it will
attract the most attention.
Usually when symmetry is sacrificed, the regularity of
arrangement is departed by putting the largest heads, or the
illustrations, on the right half of the front page.

Positions of Prominence
The most important news is generally put in the last column to the right
on the first page.
This is done for two reasons: first, because a long story in this column can
run on continuously to the first column of the second page without a
jump head; second, because as the papers are laid out on the news
stand, the right side of the paper is prominently displayed.
The second reason also accounts for the placing of cuts and cartoons on
the right side of the front page.
If there are two very important stories carrying larger heads than usual,
the one second in importance is put into the first column, partly for
symmetry and partly for the reason that, as the paper is read, the first
column is prominent.
On all pages, except the front page, the first column is usually considered
the best.

Breaking Over Front Page


Long stories with large heads are continued from the first page to one of
the inside pages. (In order to preserve alternation and get as much news
as possible on the front page)

One column of these stories, or often only one-half or two-thirds of a

column, is put on the first page, according to the make-up of the lower
half of the page, and the remaining part is put with a jump-head on an
inside page.

Kinds of jump-heads:

1. A reproduction of whole of the original head

2. A reproduction of the top deck of the original head
3. An entirely new head, in a smaller type font than the original

Grouping News
Local (City)
Foreign News

Beat or Specialised Journalism

Many news organisations assign journalists to cover specific
areas, either geographic or topical, known as beats.
This is a term originally used to describe a regular route for a
sentry or policeman.
Some beats are traditional, for example, government, police,
courts, and business. Others vary with the territory.
Depending on a communitys make-up, reporters might be
assigned to cover the environment, or the elderly, or education
as a beat.
Journalists get to know the territory and people who make up
their beat, and in many cases they have to learn specialized
vocabulary in order to understand their sources.

Beat Writers/ Editors

Beat writers should be EXPERTS on their beat.
- Know the terminology
- Translate jargon
- Know the issues
- Know what constitutes something newsworthy or potential newsworthy
Dont forget your job is to convey the news on your beat to the average reader.
Want stories understandable/ accessible
Flexibility to transition from one beat to another.
You are not forever locked into a beat you choose early in your career
Many journalists start their reporting careers as beat writers.
Almost all columnists have beat coverage experience.

Beat Writers/ Editors in Digital Age

Beat writers now have more responsibilities than ever before.
Traditional responsibilities
Hard news, features, trends, event coverage, enterprise
Curating and original quick hiss
Social media
Both their own and staying on top of others
Analysis and/or columns
Computer-assisted reporting

Examples of Beat Stories

Sporting News: Marked by the use of terms peculiar to
the game or sport and often by the slang that is popular
at the time
Society News: In order to ensure accuracy, facts for
such stories should be obtained directly from those
involved in the event
Banquets and Holiday Celebrations: Marriages,
Christmas and such other events give occasion for these
Obituaries: News stories of deaths, with biographical