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Media analysis is defined as the logical and academic scrutiny of a given piece of news worthy information either in print or broadcast material. A media analysis more often than not looks at various journalistic aspects that include the purpose of the story, tone of a given piece of news material as well as the impact of the story to the audience or readers inter alia (Higgins, 2006).
My point of interest is the news item that highlighted International Criminal Court’s Proceedings on the Kenyan Post Poll Violence. This has been a major news item for the last five days on CNN. I have been following the proceedings for three days now and I must admit that it at times got boring and hectic that I had on many occasions opt to take a walk. This was a news item that was always marked with seriousness and very low tones. Perhaps it is due to the seriousness of the issues here that no much detail has been given to advertisements. Judging from the kind of information presented in the proceedings, it is evident that this new item is purely informative and investigative as well.
According to the producers of this news item (Amnesty International), their central focus is to bring to light the events that preceded the outburst of violence in the affected areas. They perceive their audiences as people who are well informed and interested with the political landscape in Kenya that the results of these proceedings will dictate. It is also evident that watching this news item opens us up to a whole new different world where the audiences are passionate about the need to see justice being done to the perpetrators of the 2007/2008 post poll violence in Kenya.
From the evidence shown in the proceedings, it is clear that the victims of the chaos ranged from children to the youth, men and women, the major targets were however people from the communities in conflict; the perpetrators were however majorly the youth. The atrocities committed on the victims were not justifiable at all since it was a spontaneous reaction to disputed election results for presidency. It was provoked most especially by the political leaders who used their influences to encourage some of their supporters to fight even more. The result of this violence was displacement of over 500,000 people as well as over 1,000 cases of reported deaths. Many of the victims had to seek refuge in police stations and religious institutions after which they had to be settled in camps.
Title of the news item: “Putin Once More Moves to Assume Russia’s Top Job”, New York Times, 24th September, 2011.
This is a story that has got many people asking a lot of questions concerning the justification and legality of the move that Putin, the current Prime Minister of Russia intends to make. It is a political news item that will definitely raise eye brows among Russians and foreigners alike. When coming up with a print news item, focus is put on using very minimal words in order to convey the required information since space is an issue when it comes to print press (Leavy, 2006).
Differences in production of Print news and Broadcast news
Production of both types of media is by all standards a very tiresome affair for the parties involved. However, there are salient features that are unique to both; for instance in print journalism, there is more editing than it is in broadcast journalism. According to Colgan (2004), newspapers are edited for clarity, accuracy and fairness. They also edit for consistency with individual house style. On the other hand, in broadcast journalism, what a reporter writes is exactly what airs, there may however be little or no editing (Higgins, 2004).
The structures used in broadcast and print journalism are also different. In print, they use an inverted pyramid structure where most important news stories are reported in the first paragraph followed by other stories in descending order of importance. Conversely, Broadcast news stories on are broader an in as much as important facts are still reported in the first paragraph, news stories do not trail off as in the case of print news stories (Higgins, 2004).
Finally, length and pace of news also differ in both media. “The average television news story is one minute and 30 seconds long. Read at a pace of 180 words per minute these lengths equate to 270 words (Rickertson, 2004)”. In print news, the length of an article differs, there is also no control in pace since it is the reader who determines his or her pace.
Impact of Newspaper stories on readers
Newspaper stories always subject readers to an imaginary world. They do not provide readers with an opportunity to look at the physical attributes of a reporter that may influence their perceptions. A reporter will therefore rely solely on his or her writing skills so as to influence their readers. This is however not the case with online newspapers since reporters have the advantage of including videos and audio to influence their readers. Differences between online newspapers and print newspapers
Whereas an online version can be reviewed and updated with the latest information concerning the news item, a print version does not provide for such flexibility. A print version must first be written, edited then printed and distributed. In the case of this article, online newspapers have the advantage of using things such as videos and audio thereby being more interactive (Herbert, 2001). Print newspapers on the other hand only rely on words and pictures to convey information. It has also been proven that print newspapers have fewer errors compared to online newspapers since they are more thoroughly edited. The fact that anyone can make an online newspaper means that they are more likely to be false.
Both Broadcast and Print media provide various challenges in their production and dissemination of information to the target audiences. They have their various advantages and disadvantages in as far as communication is concerned. It is therefore imperative for users to understand the various pros and cons associated with these mediums of communication in order to fully utilize them.