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. Accessed on January 8, 2016.
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UNIT 5 Extra! Extra!

Language in action

• Learn how to talk about news stories
• Understand print and online newspapers
• Talk about completed actions in the past and describe actions in progress in the past
• Learn how to write headlines and news reports
• Learn how to make newspaper clippings

The Future May Be Online, but Many Will Slip Through the Net

Peter Preston

As circulations plummet, digital seems the only future for newspapers. But supposed ‘trends’ create a very confused picture.

David Sillitoe/The Guardian

Don’t stop the presses: on your commuter train or bus, people aren’t sitting with an iPad, they’re turning the pages of freesheets.

There’s an awful doubt beginning to infect the media scene as autumn comes. It takes the most commonplace assumption of newspaper life and hangs a great question mark on it. We’re constantly told that newspapers as we know them are in a period of transition, moving to become purely digital papers on the web, on tablets, on mobiles, on gadgets as yet uninvented. There is light at the end of a long tunnel of uncertainty, a vital transition. Yet suppose, just suppose, that there’s not.

Readers who read the online runes will recognise some of the doubts involved here: advertisements priced much cheaper than print, because cyberspace is infinite and therefore infinitely available; paywalls that raise useful sums that aren’t quite useful enough; tablet efforts such as Rupert Murdoch’s the Daily, that begin in a blaze of publicity then disappear behind a veil of silence; phone applications that seem hugely promising until you try charging a regular rate for them.

None of this means there isn’t good money to be made on the net. Some specialist sheets and smooth operators are doing that already. But your average, all-purpose paper on a standard path to survival? Forget it.


Available at . Accessed on April 12, 2016.

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1. Notice how the news story on the opposite page is organized. Complete this text with the parts of a news story. Use your notebook.

Most news stories have a clear organization and contain a headline, a strapline, a lead, a body (content) and an image with a caption. The A sums up the main newspaper story to attract the reader. The B adds a little more detail to the C . The opening paragraph of the news story is known as the D . The E , the strapline, and the F tell you the main ideas of the news article. The G of the story is where you find detailed information to help you better understand the story. An image is another element often used in news stories. It is usually followed by a H which integrates the image to the news story.

In what ways does the headline differ from the other parts of the article?

2. In your notebook, write the correct combination of numbers–letters to relate the sections of a newspaper to their definitions.

I Local and Foreign News Section

II Obituary Page

III Sports Page

IV Business and Finance Section

V General News

VI Art and Entertainment Section

VII Travel and Tourism Section

VIII Editorial Page

IX Classified Ads Section

A comes on the front page and contains the most important news.

B contains domestic and international news.

C contains news about sports events in and out of the country.

D gives views or opinions of the editor or publisher on certain issues or events.

E contains advertisements of various types.

F provides information on banking and business in general.

G provides a guide to enjoyable travel.

H provides information about people who died and the time and place of their burial.

I contains information about movies, radio, television, etc.

3. Which section of a newspaper do you enjoy reading the most?

4. Discuss with a partner in which section of a newspaper these headlines can be found.


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