Parts of a newspaper story

Parts of a newspaper story


In this lecture, we’ll go over a few definitions
from the glossary to ensure you understand the parts of a news story, as illustrated
in this image. Headline – The headline is what is essentially
the title of the story, written by copy editors and set in big type, that summarizes the story
so readers will know whether they want to read more. In this example, from the textbook “Inside
Reporting” by Tim Harrower, the headline reads “Freeway closed as ornery oinker hogs
traffic.” The more colorful and clever the headline,
the more likely it will interest readers. Deck – A deck is a sub headline, also written
by copy editors, that supplements information in the main headline. Keep reading to learn how “A pig names Mama
falls onto the freeway, causing hours of commuter chaos.” A story won’t always have a deck, but they
can be helpful to better explain the headline. Byline – Next up is the byline. That’s the writer’s name as it appears
at the beginning of the story, followed by credentials like staff writer or news editor. Here, Susan Payseno is a staff reporter for
the newspaper. Dateline – The dateline comes below the
byline, before the actual story starts. This gives the location of a story that happened
outside the paper’s normal coverage area. If our newspaper was based in Durham, we wouldn’t
need to put Durham as the dateline for every story we wrote. Instead, we would use it to indicate the story
happened in another area, like Portland, Oregon in this case. Lead – The story itself starts with the
lead, the first paragraph of a story. After the headline and deck, this is where
we need to hook our readers with the who, what, when, where, why and how of our story. “Westbound traffic on Interstate 84 was
backed up for nearly five miles early Monday when ‘Mama,’ a 600-pound hog on the way
to slaughter, fell from the back of a truck.” Quote – Stories often include quotes, someone’s
exact words, enclosed by quotation marks. Here, truck driver Fred Mickelson provides
some colorful commentary on Mama’s predicament. Attribution – The attribution is the phrase
that tells identified the source of a quote or information used in the story. Our story author attributes the quote to Mickelson
and information to local police. Photo – Moving to the other side of the
story you will see a photo, a picture that can run in color or black and white to help
illustrate the story. Here, highway workers use a loader to help
get Mama back on the truck. Caption – Underneath the photo is the caption,
words identifying people in the photo if possible by their names and relating it to the accompanying
story. Ideally, the photographer would be able to
identify the highway workers by name, but the job title works too. Photo credit – At the end of the caption
is the photographer’s name, called the photo credit. Kraig Scattarella is our photographer here. Pull quote – A pull quote is a quotation
from the story that’s given special graphic emphasis. It is pulled out the paper to pull in readers. The quote, “That pig really honked off a
lot of commuters,” is from Oregon state police trooper Tracy Collins. Tagline – A tagline is contact information
for the reporter at the end of the story that allows readers to provide feedback. This tagline says staff reporter Sue Payseno
covers traffic and transportation issues for the newspaper and gives her email address
at the paper. Body copy – And finally, the body copy is
the main text of a story. That’s everything from the lead to the tagline
that makes up the story.

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