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Distinct differences between news and opinions
February 7, 2012 - Jim Smith
In the world of newspapers, there are distinct differences between a column, an editorial, a news story and a blog.
A news story is aimed at being as fair, balanced and impartial as possible, telling the reader the news as is known at that point in time. Updates and followups to the news story add additional information possibly not available in the original report. The article relates what reporters are told, without the reporter making a value judgment as to the truth or accuracy of what the individual being quoted is saying.
An editorial appears on the opinion page of a newspaper and is just that -- the opinion of the newspaper on an issue of general public concern. It is not necessarily the opinion of the editor, the editorial page editor or even the publisher, but rather the viewpoint of the newspaper as an entity as decided by key personnel in the newspaper. It is not necessarily unbiased or impartial since it is not a news story, but rather an opinion based on information contained in news articles, observations or information obtained through additional research and comment.
A column, usually published on an opinion page, is the specific opinion of the writer. It is not the opinion of the newspaper and should not be construed as such. A column, like an editorial, states an opinion based on information obtained by the writer and is not necessarily unbiased or impartial since opinions by their natural are not impartial.
This blog, as are all blog, is my opinion. It is not a news story nor an editorial. It could fall closest to being a column, of which mine in the Sunday edition of The News and Sentinel and is fully identified as being written by me.
Sometimes my blog and/or my column agrees with the opinion of the newspaper as written in an editorial and sometimes my view does not agree with an editorial, just as readers sometimes agree with me and sometimes agree or disagree with the opinion of the newspaper ... and that's the way it's suppose to be in a lively, interact newspaper.
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