A GLOSSARY OF COMMON TERMS IN JOURNALISM.

Balanced. Giving equal weight to truth and falsehood.

Fair. Not actionably libelous.

Feature. A free advertisement for a business or organization run by the publisher’s friend or relative.

Investigative reporting. A news story designed to embarrass one of the publisher’s enemies.

Lead. An irrelevant paragraph inserted at the beginning of a news story to discourage readers from continuing. A classic example of a lead: “Cindy Lang never wanted to be leader of the Pittsburgh chapter of Parents of Murdered Children.”

Lede. An alternate spelling of “lead,” often used by journalists who don’t rede much.

News analysis. A method of filling column inches when all the facts are obscure or unknown.

Objective. 1. Conforming to the writer’s preconceived notion of the facts of the story. —2. Conforming to the copy editor’s preconceived notion of the facts of the story. —3. Conforming to the publisher’s preconceived notion of the facts of the story.

Quote. A short sentence that some public figure might have said if the journalist had been able to hear what he was saying.

Reliable source. A source whose statements are indefinite enough that they cannot be proved false.

Skewed. Demonstrably true, as opposed to balanced.


Published in: on March 2, 2012 at 5:13 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Sadly, everyone I want to share this with would fire me.

  2. Too true, alas.


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