Wednesday, April 24, 2024

TALK BACK: Serious thought given to stories


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HOW IS THAT even news?
That is a question posed every day by online readers, often when they disagree with the decision taken by THE NATION to report on an issue, where the story is placed or the headline of the story.
But what makes an issue newsworthy? Just because you have no interest in a topic doesn’t mean that someone else won’t. There are millions of people who enjoy a rousing political debate, but won’t be caught at a sporting event. Similarly, there are millions who love sports, but will never attend a political meeting.
Just as many love music and entertainment, but will never go to some of the more popular shows because they can’t identify with current musical trends, lyrics or even the type of audience they may attract.
It’s really a matter of personal choice.
Here at THE NATION, we don’t simply slap a headline or picture on a page and “call it wally”, as the Bajan saying goes. The editors meet every evening to review what is on offer – whether the stories have been on the radio since 6:30 a.m. or exclusives that were being worked on.
Sometimes it can get heated as we debate the pros and cons of a story. Are all of the bases covered? Do we have all of the facts? Where do we place it? Why should it go on Page 3 as opposed to the back page or the front? Why should we use this picture and not that one?
Here are a few things to consider the next time you’re tempted to ask/write that question.
Is it timely/topical? Will the impact be felt here at home or abroad? What is the nature of that impact and the possible consequences? Is there a strong human element? Who is the subject of the story?
Is it a rarity or novelty – like a priest-in-training wearing dreadlocks in the Anglican Church?
Here are a few comments from the story on Yvonne Jordan who received $10.16 in severance.
Lloyd Gulstone: This situation requires a more thorough investigation before blame is laid at either the feet of the Transport Board or the goodly lady featured in the article. And more than likely, there could be the possibility that the number of uncertified sick leave taken by the goodly lady could have ignificantly affected her severance pay since all of this would be deducted from whatever monies would be granted to her.
Georges Augustin: It does appear that Ms Yvonne Jordan has been thrown under the bus, by her employer, no pun intended.
Allen Mim: Slavery all over again.
David Hall: I guess there is way more to this than meets the eye.
June Skeete: This is heartbreaking!
Jay Tee: Disgusting to say the least.
Ego Evaluation: If she is sick, it may be due to the stress of the times. This figure doesn’t seem right. I hope an explanation is provided to her soon.
Sherrylyn Toppin is The Nation’s Online Editor.


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