Reporting in Print Media

Reporting in Print Media


Reporting is just a genre of writing, alongside essays and stories, and bloggers most certainly fall into that genre.”

When they talk about reporting on a show like Frontline, they mean the process a reporter goes through.

1. Interviews, research.

2. Assemble a story.

3. Fact-checking and editing.

4. Publishing.

Most bloggers aren’t doing this whole thing. Our process is different, and I’d argue no less rigorous, just more distributed, and step 2 is something everyone does for themselves.

Key point in last night’s piece — sources are part of the reporting process, and more and more, the sources are becoming bloggers.


Reporting means gathering facts and presenting them objectively with ail news writing skills. It is an active, creative, long and tough process of news, gathering, ideas and opinion collection, fact finding in order to serve the general public by informing them and enabling them to make judgment of the issues of the time.

The reporter either he/she is general assignment reporter, beat reporter or specialized reporter wants to know at all costs, what is going on and why, what has happened and why and who is involved in what manner. He/she reports it to satisfy the curiosity of the public by giving due coverage to 5Ws & 1H which the people want to know.

News is not planted and cultivated in neat row for efficient harvesting and not necessarily in the tidy news offices. They are not developed in a vacuum. News is more likely to be found among the people, institutions, organizations, history etc. By the reporting of short news stories the reader can receive the information about the citizens, social, cultural and religious groups. Conducting interview is another part of reporting. Through interview news, personal ideas and opinions can be reported. Without reporting process there can be little business in news, and without news there can be no newspaper.

Political Reporting

Generally the coverage of a political campaign oPa political personality is not sufficient. Much time and coverage needs to be given in following a candidate around and listening to the political speeches over and over again. Most of the political reporter’s time is spent while covering the purely political aspects of government and personalities who run the government. He/she goes beneath the surface of routine political events and comes up with stories of great importance. For political reporting the broad knowledge of election laws, system and organizational setup of different political parties, political organizations, precampaign activities, campaigns, election practices, polling laws and techniques and way of result coverage and their proper interpretation are required by the political reporter He/she has to interview candidates, write biographical sketches and evaluate the candidates’ position on major issues during a political campaign

Education and Research Reporting ,

Research and education go together Through research one can add new knowledge which is necessary for educating the nation and also for national development. The research programmes of different institutions and their findings •and achievements should be reported. The education system, its merits and demerits are the main sphere of education reporting. Public and private schooling and what

is happening in universities and colleges regarding academic activities and developments, teachers and students training facilities, co-curricular activities, unions and a»ociatson« should be highlighted in the news stories. The budget allocated for education and its utilisation, literacy rate and programmes to increase literacy rate, adults education are the topics about which public has some curiosity to know. Trends in classrooms teaching and dozens of other significant problems can also be reported. The education and research reporter is normally expect-d to cover activities at all levels of the research and schooling system from policy making to the teachers in the classrooms. The research and education beat offers the opportunity for many routine stories as well as major news breaks, features and interpretative pieces.

Environment Reporting

The environment affects everyday life. People, sensitive about it, demand the due coverage of environment and the factors causing pollution, etc. Therefore the environment reporting can become a human service reporting. What are the government measurements for the prevention of pollution and what is public part in creating and preventing the pollution. Nowadays environmental protection has become a political movement and a sensitive reporter uses the techniques of all kinds in environmental reporting. It merited attention, with most of the early focus being on water pollution, air pollution, sanitation and urban sprawl, etc. The reporter has to cover the horror stories about the possible diseases and destruction of the planet. The reporter has to point out particularly the development of what lie/ she considers dangerous system for producing energy and importance of energy for national development. Through environmental reporting the public can be well aware about the rate at which natural fuels are being consumed and pollution caused b\ the burning of these fuels. He/she has to inform the readers about present happenings and future impact on human life.

Religious Reporting

Religious news are also part of the newspaper contents. It is one of the most sensitive beats, and demands great care and responsibility on the part of the reporter covering various religious events. However, impartiality is the only effective means to deal with this beat. The reporter has to report in fair, factual, impartial and unbiased way and maintain objectivity.

The religious reporter must have clear understanding of religious sects, groups, organisations, institutions and worship services in the country and particularly in the city where he/she is working. The reporter uses simple way of explaining the news events for general readers by interpreting the refigious voiding, terminologies

In religious reporting political motives of the local and national leaders must foe covered. Incorrect use of titles in religious reporting discourages the interest while their correct use builds confidence in the reliability of the news. A reporter has to be cautious in religious reporting and should always keep in view the highly sensitive nature of religious ideologies, conflicts and controversies.

Speech Reporting

Speeches are the basis for sound stories published daily in the press. All those speeches taking place from time to- time in the city are important to the participants but few are worthy of news coverage. Advance stories are also being written about speeches through which the readers are informed about the person to be delivering the speech, venue and topic, etc. The reporter in speech reporting must be well aware of the ways of covering an event, and how to get, write, arrange and structure the facts of speech in a news form. The additional information can be gathered at the end of the speech or to clarify some points which is a good practice.

The most significant criteria in speech reporting are to include all the positive as well as negative aspects of various speeches. The reporter takes only the essential parts of the speech and report these points in a concise way. The main points of the speech go into the lead or intro while quotes go into the body of the story.

Cultural Reporting

Cultural reporting requires a reporter to cover not only individuals i.e. artists, craftsmen etc. but also to cover different cultural organisations, institutions and other events by upholding public interest . For this he/she has to dig out that how many cultural organisational setups exist in the city. The cultural reporter is actually a cultural promoter. The reporter has a great responsibility to stimulate interest and participation in various cultural functions. He/she has to get ideas, opinions and news about culture from different materials printed by these organizations. When actually covering culture, it is preferable to visit the scenc of cultural activity personally. Familiarity with cultural heritage and history is a special qualification of cultural reporter. He/she must be conscious about manipulation by the artists. The cultural news story writing style and contents must be based on information, entertainment and of general public interest. Music world-cinema, theatre, television-literature, fairs etc. have great newsworthy material of public interest.


Sports reporting field is broad and interesting enough to challenge tije finest talent. The sports coverage remains the life blood of most sports pages. More opinions and news analyses appear on these pages. Sports reports are read mostly due to their contents and style. Sports reporter should take into account all the compulsory elements of the sports news item while reporting a news event. Sports reporting requires qualities of background knowledge and judgement, critical evaluation of sports besides sound general knowledge about games and their rules & regulations. The performance of the teams should be covered fairly, impartially and in an unbiased way. The quality of a written sports item depends on the quality of its reporting. The sports reporter who, among other things, Knows the players well, the strategy they use during game, key incidents, crowd behaviour and the game which he/she is covering, is able to write an interesting sports story. But while writing a sports story or its advance story the reporter must follow the regular news writing and reporting principles in building the story and other requirements of sports writing Sports reporting ranges from straight news reporting through all degrees of interpretation and feature writing and the editorialised column. A sports event may be treated in any one of these degrees or in all of them combined. For an important sports event, an advance story, a straight story, similarly background, prediction, follow-up types of stories may be used.


Parliament and its proceedings have always been the main interest of newspaper readers. Parliamentary reporting offers opportunities to the reporter to conduct first hand study of the practical working procedure, responsibilities, role and functions of parliament, their members, different officials, the offices which they hold and their biographies besides the working of government. He/she remains in touch with the parliamentarians who may become an important source of news. In parliamentary reporting, all the techniques, proceedings and requirements of political and court reporting are involved because it is highly technical and sensitive. It needs professional skills and there are chances that even an experienced reporter may misinterpret the arguments and the proceedings. He/she must, have access to legal parliamentary literature, reports, periodicals to improve his/her knowledge and skill. A parliamentary reporter should be well acquainted with the legislative procedure in both the Houses of parliament and could write reports of adjournment and privilege motions, as well as of questions hour, tea break discussions on private bills and proceedings of the Senate. A lot of information can be obtained through private dealings with the members of the parliament. Parliamentary report has to be composed in prevalent parliamentary terminology.


Reporting crime news can be a demanding task and at times, if properly done, it even amounts to public service that perhaps can even be deterrent to certain types of crimes. However, crime news reporting needs technical care on the part of reporter while covering his beat. A crime reporter should know what is meant by crime. A breach of law is a crime and may be either felony or a misdemeanour. The basic principle of crime/court reporting is that NOTHING is permitted which may prejudice the right of any accused to a completely FAIR and IMPARTIAL trial. Crime and court reporting may be completed in four steps, i.e. the crime, the arrest, the trail, the verdict In the selection of facts for crime/ court news story, the reporter must be well-alert and these facts should be carefully handled by observing the ethics of crime/court reporting. The length, the headline size and lead formation of a court/crime story is determined by the seriousness of the crime and court proceedings.


The coverage of war imposes major responsibilities on reporters. On the one hand, they must exercise the greatest care not to spread rumours and on the other hand, they must expose themselves to danger if necessary to determine the magnitude of war event. But whatever they do. they must always be conscious that careless war reporting can cause untold harm in a tense situation. The greatest care must be taken in reporting killings, injuries, prisoners, property loss and the area captured etc. The kind of weapons being used in the*war can a!so be reported. The position of armies on land, in the air or oceans, bombing on different areas and types of bombing can be explained The 1SPR in Pakistan also releases information about war situation.

The cause of war, beginning of war, major areas of war and who is at fault must be covered in war reporting. The fundamental precautions regarding war should be followed. Different news story types can be used in war reporting to give full coverage of war.

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