The News and the reportage They are two forms of journalistic texts, which are characterized by their informative nature and by being disclosed in the mass media of written communication such as the printed newspaper, magazines or digital journalistic media.
The News It is a text of immediate validity and daily elaboration, which reviews for readers some specific fact or event that may be interesting for public opinion.
The most recent and relevant world or local day-to-day events are news events that can be reviewed only once and then lose validity.
The news responds to a strict criterion of novelty, so they never deal with historical, reflective or playful events or facts. They are objective texts, truthful, concrete and relatively brief.
Characteristics of the news
- Inverted pyramid. The text obeys the inverted pyramid: in the first paragraph all the specific information about what happened is provided and, as the text progresses, more details and supplementary information are added.
- Objectivity. It presents null or minimal presence of the journalist’s voice and absolutely no opinion or evident position regarding the reported events. The language is direct, concise, without poetic flight, without fictional resources or ramblings.
- Interest. What is reported is striking for the community and not for a specific individual. It adheres to a specific issue, affiliated with the body or segment of the media in which it appears: science and technology, sports, culture, politics, international, etc.
- Novelty. The event is novel, that is, it has a sense of timing and will try to report the event in question before other media. Reviewing an already given news lacks interest.
- Veracity. The information must be truthful, not have fictional content and use reliable sources to inform society responsibly.
The reports are planned documentary inquiries, whose purpose is to inform but from a deeper and broader perspective than news. They are long texts abundant in details, which even use narrative resources, personal postures and expressive turns that are not used in the simplest texts of journalism.
Reportage emerged in the 17th century, when news writers fed gazettes with impressions of their travels, opinions, and stories. The first reports date back to the 19th century, when journalism found its place in the areas of war and special emissaries were sent to portray conflicts and then recompose what was experienced to inform the public.
With the arrival of the new media and new technologies, other forms of information close to the report emerged, such as the photoreport (visual report) or the audiovisual documentary. However, today the report is still the product of a sustained investigative effort and therefore requires more time, preparation and talent from the journalist.
Characteristics of the report
- Research. They use mechanisms of expression to collect diverse data and perspectives regarding the matter.
- Means. They resort to interviews, photographs, reproductions and even dramatizations if necessary, in order to transmit what is investigated in greater depth.
- Extension. They require considerable physical space and a sustained effort to research, organize, write and correct the text.
- Depth. They focus on a specific theme and can approach it from history, different perspectives and even dare to speculate on future events.
Differences between news and report
- Validity. While the news is ephemeral and fast, the report lasts a little longer: it can be reread later without losing its validity.
- Extension. The news is brief and concise, while a report has the space and time that it considers necessary.
- Objectivity. Both types of text must be objective and truthful, but the writing of the news is punctual and devoid of nuances, while in the report it is possible to find points of view, speculations and reflections.
- expressive resources. The news may be accompanied by a photograph, but in general, all the information is offered in a flat, simple and direct way. The report, on the other hand, can use rhetorical, expressive, poetic resources, photographs, interviews, archive material, etc.
- Authorship. The news are not usually signed, nor do they belong to an author, but rather be the product of a newsroom that works together. Instead, every report bears the name of those responsible, even if it is an investigation team.
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