News is information about current events in a community, country or the world. It is usually delivered via a medium such as newspaper, radio, television or social media. It can also be delivered through other written media such as letters to the editor, reviews and commentaries. News has a variety of purposes including informing the public, keeping them updated and aware of important happenings, educating and explaining complex topics, and providing entertainment.

When writing a news article, it is essential to begin by researching the topic thoroughly. This means answering the five Ws – who, what, where, when and why. Once all the facts are gathered, it is time to write. It is also important to note the tone of the article and who it will be read by. This will help determine how much detail should be included and whether or not a story is suitable for publication.

A good news article begins with a catchy headline and includes all of the most important facts. The headline should be short and to the point and follow Associated Press style guidelines (unless otherwise specified by the publication). A lead paragraph is often included to provide a preview of the rest of the article and includes a summary of the news. It is also helpful to include a byline that includes the writer’s name.

After the main facts are listed, any additional information that could be useful should be included. This can include contact information, additional facts about the people involved, quotes from interviews and more. Adding this extra information can help round out the story and make it more appealing to readers.

Most people agree that the purpose of news is to inform and educate the reader, listener or viewer. It is not necessarily to entertain them – that can come from other areas such as music and drama on radio or television, or crosswords in newspapers.

Although most of the stories that are covered in the news are about human beings, they can also be about natural occurrences such as a cyclone, bush fire, drought or earthquake. These types of news articles often provide a more sensational and exciting story than a story about a new product or company announcement.

In general, if a news story is interesting and significant enough, it will be covered in the media. However, the definition of what is interesting and significant may differ from society to society. For example, in one society a dog bites man will be considered newsworthy, while in another, this is not an unusual event and therefore will not be reported.

The course will introduce students to the fundamentals of writing and reporting news, especially in a fast-paced digital age. It will teach them how to identify the key elements of a story, gather information efficiently, place it in context and write concise and compelling accounts at breakneck speeds. It will also enable them to understand the role of the media and how it influences the public’s perception of the news.