Monday, September 15, 2008

News releases and Original reporting

Jennifer Hudson is engaged to reality TV boyfriend

For an example of a press release, I went straight to entertainment news and found a primary example. In the world of celebrity news, information can break in an instant and create shockwaves to the general public. Located in the celebrity news section of the, news has surfaced that actress and singer, Jennifer Hudson is engaged! Hudson's boyfriend, David Otunga, known as "Punk" on the VH1 reality show, "I Love New York," surprised the American Idol alum during her birthday celebration Friday in Los Angeles. The clue that made me assume this came from a press release was the short article the story was presented in as if it were breaking news. Hudson's publicist, Jessica Kolstad, stated the vital facts that occured involving the exciting news such as the who, what, where when and how, but no quote from Hudson herself. The article is told from the perspective of the PR person and she's telling the story without revealing too much about her client's latest announcement. The original press release was probably a more detailed article, but reporters condensed the article to format the online newspaper. According to the article, it was edited today at 12:59p.m. and shows the quickness as which the news was receieved. As news becomes available as to wedding plans and comments from Hudson herself, this will stand solely as an engagement announcement.

In California Train Crash, Riders Had Destinations and Death in Common

In the example of original reporting, I selected a story based on the aftermath of a California Train Crash. I found this article to be a work of original reporting by the angle taken on the story. Instead of emphasizing the horrific accident that took place; the author investigates into the personal lives of the people killed tragically. The article solely comes from the appeals and testimonies of the victims loved ones as opposed to statements from state or department officials. The incident was publicized throughout the United States, but turning an existing story and finding a story within a story makes the article one of original quality. The article takes to an emotional appeal to readers as they learned more about a few of the 25 people killed. Originality takes on a role of thinking outside the box and this story does just that. Other publications may cover the crash itself, but it takes a clever reporter to read between the lines and see what lies beneath. Walter Fuller, Maria Villalobos and Yi Chao were a few of the victims unknown to each other, but their identity is now known to the nation at large because one reporter chose to dig a little deeper.

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