This story is written by Brad Phillips and first ran on PR Daily in January .
Journalists receive dozens of unsolicited phone calls and hundreds of unwanted emails each day.
Their Twitter networks churn out an endless stream of updates, links, and photos.
Their RSS (really simple syndication) feeds offer innumerable stories from their favorite blogs and websites.
With all of that information constantly coming in, it’s not hard for reporters to find potential news stories. But finding news stories they can actually report on? Now that’s the hard part. That’s because every news organization has constraints on which stories their reporters can cover and how they can cover them.
In virtually every newsroom around the world, here are the five factors that drive news decisions: time, speed, space, profit, and bias.
Journalists have never before faced such bruising deadlines. Newspaper reporters who once had to write a story a day now have to continually update that story for their paper’s website.
Their broadcast counterparts now have to produce separate Web-only versions of their radio and television segments throughout the day and promote them via social media.
Plus, many reporters are doing the jobs of two or three people, because it’s likely that their news organizations have laid off several—if not dozens—of their colleagues. If your story requires reporters to do extensive research, they probably won’t cover it at all.
Competition from faster-moving new media has largely forced traditional media outlets to abandon rigorous fact checking. To keep up, they now rush deadlines and release stories sooner than they’d like, especially when covering breaking news events.
If you can’t explain your story quickly (and easily), it’s more likely that reporters will get at least some aspect of it wrong.
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