What Is The Scope Of Journalism?

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Jason Schwarzmann Profile
The scope of modern day journalism is absolutely huge. Journalism is everywhere, just as media takes an integral part in all of our lives. Where there is media, there is journalism. Here are a few places journalism may appear:

  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • TV and radio
  • Internet


Newspapers are the oldest and most traditional format for the inclusion of journalism. They are regularly scheduled publications containing news of current events, informative articles, diverse features and advertising. Indeed, newspapers originally started life as 'journals', from which the word 'journalism' is derived. During the 19th century, American journalists relied on sensational stories that were used to excite or anger the public, rather than to inform them. This form of journalism became known as 'yellow' journalism. Accurate and fact based reporting became popular again around the time of World War II, when the restrained style of writing gained resurgence.

Newspaper journalism is open to criticism from analysts who often point out the room for bias, errors in facts and fabrication due to the fact most newspapers are owned by media conglomerates (such as Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.), which have the power to use their output for political or monetary gain. Despite this, newspapers have still played a large role in the development of freedom of expression. Inside sources with the ability to 'leak' stories to the press often choose newspapers first over any other medium due to the perceived willingness of their editors to expose corruption and lies among otherwise respected institutions.

Magazines are publications that are generally published on a regular schedule, whether it be weekly, monthly or quarterly (each quarter of a year) containing a variety of articles. They usually take a much more relaxed format than magazines, with a more informal style to their writing. They are also usually focused on a particular subject or area of interest, whereas newspaper articles can cover almost any topic. First published in 1731 in London, The Gentleman's Magazine is considered the first general-interest magazine. And its editor Edward Cave (who wrote under the pseudonym 'Sylvanus Urban'), was one of the very first to use the term 'magazine'.

TV and radio news journalism is known as news broadcasting and is produced locally in a newsroom, or by a broadcast network. It sometimes also includes such additional material as sports coverage, weather forecasts, traffic reports, commentary, and other material that the broadcaster feels is relevant to the intended audience. Most major television channels offer regular news broadcasts throughout the day. In the UK especially, this is often required as part of a channels public service output remit. There are also many other 'rolling news' networks (a news service that broadcasts news programs 24 hours a day on a continual basis), such as BBC News and Sky News in the UK, and CNN in America.

Internet communications have excelled in the last decade or so, of course taking the way news is published with it. There are now an uncountable n digitized  umber of reputable and not-so-reputable sources of information on the internet. Everything from digitized versions of the very newspapers that headed up the first print media movements hundreds of year ago, to independent bloggers reporting their own stories from the comfort of their own laptops. Because of this opinions are a lot easier to come by, and users can seek out the same story from multiple sources to get more of a balanced view more than they ever could in the past.

This makes for the scope of journalism to be very broad indeed, as almost every form of media these days can be used as an expression of opinion or journalism. So next time you see a news report, think of all the other places you could find a report on the same story, and then check those out to see if they differ in any way. Chances are they will, but you will be able form your own opinions on the story, and then maybe you could even blog your own version of the story yourself!

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