Radio News.

The Radio News.


Radio news exists in time. It is organized for linear consumption which means it is reported, more or less, as it happens. The lead story is usually the most important event of the given hour of the broadcast while subsequent stories follow in terms of importance with the least important story appearing last.

  1. Radio news offers immediacy in that interviews are often conducted live and on the spot from locations relevant to the story being reported.
  2. Radio news is presented in cycles and stories are constantly updated in terms of priority and detail.
  3. The mode of address in radio news is often personal and individual depending on the target audience of the radio station. For example, on a talk station the mode of address may be serious and sombre while on a young person’s pop station it may be fast and far less solemn.
  4. Radio news is often prepared, produced and presented by a small team of people especially in local stations with little funding to keep them afloat. It is in organizations such as these that news agencies are very cost effective.
  5. Radio news is often context dislocated and audiences could be almost anywhere in the world. This means that news stories of local interest may have little or no interest to listeners not from the community or listening in a foreign country.

News bulletins usually have a basic structure which involves the main headlines often repeated in cycles, the main stories local, and national or global followed by weather and traffic reports. News bulletins may also contain reports on the daily newspapers, interviews, sport and weather or traffic reports. They may also contain arts, interviews and more recently, at local level, obituary notices.

Broadcast Radio newsrooms have a number of different departments headed by the head of news are news editor whose role it is to manage, schedule and prioritize the news. He or she is usually assisted by a bulletin editor or producer who is focused on styles, language, coordination, and checking. There are also presenters, journalists, researchers and technicians.

Radio news has a number of components and conventions. These are, more often than not, adhered to in most newsrooms. These components and conventions include the use of the studio anchor, telephone interviews, managed debates, outside broadcasts, specialist prepared articles, musical signposts to identify the station, voxpops and less weighty stories at the end of the broadcast.

So how does a new story come about? This is known as radio news flow and the process begins, for example, with an initial call to the news desk whereupon shocked report is prepared and a reporter is sent to investigate the story and to gather more information. The reporter will then prepare a short report prioritized and presented whilst other information is found. The reporter and external informants present the story true the news anchor. The news item is packaged for repeats or developed with updates or sent out for syndication or relegated in priority. The story dies when no new information is forthcoming and the priority of the story drops to the end of the schedule before finally vanishing.


About Gerard Hannan

Media Student at MIC/UL in Limerick, Ireland. Worked as a Broadcaster/Journalist in Limerick for over 25 Years and has also published four local interest books.

Posted on March 27, 2012, in Media and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Of course. Contact me at


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