News editing

Subject: Mass Communication

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There are two most important aspects of journalism: First reporting and then editing. Reporting is a process of collecting information from the field having news value. From the field reporter tends to gather, select, write and disseminate the news to the newsroom and then it is followed by editing process which is concerned with correction, organization, condensation and improvising of collected materials. Such job of editing is carried out by the different editor as editor-in-chief, executive editor, news editor, sub-editor, beat-editor and proofreader. While editing news, news editor must have the knowledge of writing headlines for print and electronic media followed by attractive layout and makeup.
News editing

Introduction of Editing

Editing is a skill of correcting the mistakes improvising flows and modifying the unnecessary pattern of writing in any piece of writing, books, images, language or sound. It is a process of preparing edited version of writing free from any kind of error or mistakes. It is professionally edited by an editor.

Editors are often specialized in their editing skills such as correction, condensation, organization and other modification. Editing is essential in writing, cinema/video, sound and music recording. For instance, when there is a dubbing error in cinemas or video, sound editing is essential to be done.

The Editor

Editor is a person who has knowledge of editing skills. S/he only has the rights to decide for the inclusions of contents in any project. Editor is the important person of any editorial profession.

According to the Oxford Dictionary, editor comes from the Latin phrase e ditus which means "to put forward". In French, editeur means "publisher". Also in Italian editore means "publisher".

The person who edits for the newspaper is called news editor. S/he selects the necessary materials that are essential to publish in the newspaper. S/he is responsible for the all the contents of the newspaper. Editor is a well-paid job with the responsibility of publication; along with that, it has got so many pressure of work.

Editing is also a really tough job, the editor might also get some interference while continuing their works due to the power struggle.

Types of Editor

  1. Editor-in-chief

    Editor in chief is the main person of any media who has got the responsibility of policy and decision making. S/he plays the role of promoter and co-ordinator. S/he is responsible for both good and wrong works. S/he is also responsible for the development of public relation through the help of electronic media. Editor in chief also plays the role of "watch dog" as he continuously keeps his/her eyes on the fellow competitive media. S/he is also responsible for controlling and regulating other editors. S/he even develops a strategic plan for media house.

  2. Executive Editor

    Executive editor is the main assistance of editor in chief. S/he helps the editor to make strategies and decision of the media house. he even helps to function other sub-editors and reporters. He is also responsible for the implementation of plans and policy. s/he also maintains good relation with other co-staffs. S/he is also responsible for an administrative function such as separation of editorial and opinion pages.

  3. News Editor

    Editor that works especially in the newsroom is called news editor. S/he is a gatekeeper newspaper and responsible for the inclusion of contents in the newspaper. News editor even instructs the news reporter for the selection of news which is answerable to 5wh questions.

  4. Sub- Editor

    Sub-editor is the person responsible for the condensation, organization, improving and correction of the mistakes on the writings collected by the reporters. S/he is responsible for the collection and arrangement of stories and pictures or images. S/he even assists executive editor. Sub- editor must have the analytical mind, news sense good reading skills and accuracy. S/he should play the qualities of work attitude, personal relation, deadline conscious and responsible.
    Qualities of Sub-editor
    • News sense: A sub-editor should have the skills to evaluate news values of the copies filed by the reporters. S/he should decide where and how to begin the story without missing important details.
    • Clarity: Sub-editor is a gatekeeper who judges the clarity of the copy.
    • Objectivity: Sub-editors should not allow their personal bias or ideas to creep into a story. They should not take sides buy try to cover differing viewpoints in order to achieve balance in the presentation of the story.
    • Accuracy: A sub-editor should strive for accuracy. S/he should follow the ground rules prepared by the editorial board for checking facts when in doubt. Checking for spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, checking the authenticity of data presented from the normal duty of a sub-editor.
    • Alertness: A sub-editor has to be alert while working on the news desk. S/he should be conversant in responding to phone calls and aware of events and issues of contemporary public interest.
    • Speed: A person who cannot work fast cannot be a good sub-editor.
    • Calmness: Sub-editors may have emotions but they have to stifle them in the face of disturbing influences; they have to develop resistance to excitability.
    • Other Qualities: Sub-editors should have other qualities like curiosity, skepticism, punctuality, patience, imagination, farsightedness, self-discipline, integrity, fearlessness and frankness, tactfulness, initiative, mobility, diligence; good command in language.

  5. Beat/ feature editor

    Beat editors are responsible for a particular beat. The beat might be sports, entertainment, environment, politics and so on. They even verify features and finalize op-ed page. They are even called photo journalists as they select a photo that has got news value and provide them a caption.

  6. Layout Editor

    The person who is responsible for designing entire makeup of the newspaper is called layout editor. They set the attractive makeup of newspaper for increasing their readers. It is concerned with visual impression and elements such as pictures, selection of fonts color/ font size, sketch etc. They are also called make-up editors as they are assigned for the best outlook of newspaper contents.

  7. Proofreader

    Proofreading is concerned with the accuracy or appearance of the contents before publishing. They are also done by a proofreader that is techno crafts of checking spelling, grammar and other mistakes. Experienced proofreaders help the editor to correct the entire mistakes in the news editing.

Roles of Editor
  1. Editor as Communicator
    Editor is the in-charge of newsroom and newspaper. Through the help of media house, they tend to develop the effective communication with the large public. They are responsible for the attractive news presentation and news-oriented information. They must be expert in communication in order to develop strong communication with mass. Therefore they even simplify and improvise the content so that it can be easily understood by the audiences. For the effective communication, they even use different media like newspaper, radio, television, and internet. Edited contents can be understood or communicated with wide audiences. Though there might be some technological interference but editor play the role of good communicator.

  2. Editor as Gatekeeper
    Editor as gatekeeper controls all kind of information. They might be coming from different news source such as telephone, fax, internet, reporters and so on. All those tons of information are not necessarily important for publication so the editor has the rights to accept or reject that information as per the importance of news value. They might include or exclude that news content as per the demand. Gate keeping can be done by different editors at different levels by executive editor, sub-editor, reporter, stringer and so on.

  3. Editor as Public Relation
    Public relation is the way of establishing good will and good public image of any media organization. The main responsibility of an editor is to influence the large number audiences creating positive attitude through their publication. Public relation tries to influence news media through its news content. Public relation tries to develop strong relation through his/her opinion, remarks and news article. It also maintains a good relationship with the competitive organization.

  4. Editor as Media Manager
    Management is especially concerned with planning, organizing, controlling and leading when these activities are carried out by editors it is called media management. Editor is responsible for the recruiting staffs, maintaining ethics and responsibilities of an organization. Editor is also responsible for the management of the entire state of the economy, controlling expenditure so on. Editor develops and maintains a good relationship with other co-staffs and prepares strategic plans and sound environment. Editor also assigns the job od editor as per their levels. Editor, therefore, manages the status of a media house, controls the untrue rumors and maintains ethics and responsibilities.

Introduction of headline

Headline is the highlight of the news story, reports and article which indicate the whole theme of the text below. Any sentences that summarize or introduces the story of any news, events and the public affair is called headline. Every news story is written with their own kind of headline. It is often written in Capitals, big and clear font. It has either one or multiple columns. The good editor must have the art of writing the suitable headline. It is said that a good headline not only tells the story but also sells the story.

How to write Headline?

Headlines are written on the top of the stories that summarize the list of content. It not only tells the story but also sells the story. Here are some tips for headline writing;

  • Headlines are written in bold, big and clear fonts that the news text.
  • They are written in present tense and active voice.
  • It should be written in simple language, brief and clear but should not have a double meaning.
  • Articles like 'a', 'an', 'the' are often omitted from the headline and avoid quotes, semicolon, question or exclamation marks.
  • News lead helps to determine the headline.

The Art of Sub- Editing

According to the important of news value, stories should be selected and it is lengthening in order to cover news hole.

  • Sub- editors rewrite some important stories that are written in the blunt language into a simple language.
  • Sub- editors cut off those contents of news which are not necessary.
  • Sub- Editor writes the news as per the societal norms and values without crossing the legal boundaries.
  • Information is published as per the verified content of authenticity.


The media house often expresses which called an editorial. It is done by a news organization to simplify the reported news without any biases. Media house expresses their voice through the means of editorial and they are not written by the regular reporters rather are written by a group of editors without any bylines. As it is the voice of news organization it represents the state of that very media. Editorial is also printed regularly on the same page of the newspaper and labeled as editorials. Editorials are done to interpret, criticize, persuade and praise people issue or organization.

Types of editorial

  • Editorials that interpret: Such kind of editorial may simply give further information about a news story. It may explain those important events of the story which are not suitable to news column.
  • Editorial that criticizes: This kind if editorials are written on the basis of a current news event. They are very critical of an action and they might represent some problems or issues. They are specially written to provide some solution to the problem. So, they are positive and optimistic.
  • Editorial that persuades: The purpose of writing this editorial is to inspire and encourage their readers. These types of editorial comments and criticize in a convincing way.
  • Editorial that praise: this editorial is written in order to praise congratulate and encourage the people and organization that have achieved something great. It raises the proud feeling.

Planning a house Journal/ School Magazine

House journals are specially published by the particular institution in order to develop a public relation. These journals are often supported economically by those institutions such as political parties, business companies, corporate houses and others. These house journals are periodically published and it is the voice of that particular institution. These are published and distributed to their members, customers, employees or well wishers. They are published monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, half yearly or annually.

Types of House journal

  • Internal house journal: Internal house journal is published for the use of an organization. It is published with the cooperation of their employees by providing them an opportunity to explore their talents and by supplying them sufficient information about the organization. The main aim of internal house journal is to develop a good image of a company who cares and work for the well-being of employees.
  • Internal-external house journal: The purpose of internal-external house journal is to meet the needs of company’s employees as well as their consumers. Similarly, the intention of house journal is to save the total participant of the employees who are working to serve the organization.
  • External house journal: The main purpose of the publication of external house journal is to build the personality of an organization. It carries the voices of the institution to the outsider such as clients, customers, guardians, supporters, competitors etc as a mouthpiece. A regular publication of house journal improves the quality of information and presentation that helps to develop positive impression of the organization.

Suggestion for news designing

  1. Imagine the vertical and horizontal lines from the centre of the page in order to balance weight on the both side of the page.
  2. Place the most important stories at the top of the page starting from the right-hand corner and a story that is second in important appears at the top left-hand corner of the page.
  3. Picture should not be kept in the middle of the page because the newspaper is folded across the middle.
  4. Keep balance in advertising. News and Advertisements must be in 60:40 ratios.

News editing for print and electronic media

  • Reading a story aloud in order to classify the length, errors and misspelling of the stories.
  • Length of the sentence might vary but average should be below 25 words.
  • Different errors in writing such as twisted phrases, jargon long word; vague words etc are modified with a simple one.
  • Every sentence should be constructed with (subject verb object) S.V.O patterning of writing. A writer must be selective with his/her words.
  • Removal of the entire label is necessary. Libel usually results in carelessness, exaggerated writing, statements of officials made outside privileged situated or other failures.


Prasaran Patrakarita: Hate Kitab, Second edition, Nepal Press Institute, 1997.

Mass Media Laws and Regulations in Nepal.

Visho Suchana tatha Sanchar Pranali Ka Naya Ayama haru , Nepal press institute.

The Constitution of Nepal(selected topics). (2047)

Things to remember
  1. Editing is a job of checking the facts, photos and figures, correcting the mistakes, removing wrong words or phrases, checking house style, reshaping and fitting according to the size of news hole.
  2. Proofreading means reading a proof copy of a text in order to detect and correct any errors.
  3. House journals are usually non-commercial publications which are economically supported by particular institution or organization in order to develop public relation.
  4. Page making and layout Design is the artistic arrangement of type, color, photo and illustration in newspaper in order to make it more interesting and attractive.
  5. Editorials are usually short pieces of writings related to different opinions and written by the editorial board member. They represent the voice of particular news agency and do not have bylines.
  • It includes every relationship which established among the people.
  • There can be more than one community in a society. Community smaller than society.
  • It is a network of social relationships which cannot see or touched.
  • common interests and common objectives are not necessary for society.

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