How All India Radio (AIR) compilation the News?

All India Radio (AIR) News Services Division gets news items from its own correspondents and news agencies, PTI and UNI. After that compilation the News process start, the news pool is sorted out into following categories.

Pool Copy.

Keeping in view the target audience, MR has introduced a system of what is called new-spool. The News Room has four shifts during a day-morning, day time, evening and night. Each shift issues its own pool copy in English. After editing, the selected news is put into the pool split into different categories such as Home, Foreign, Parliament and Sports. Inclusion of an item in the pool means:

  • The news is broadcast worthy,
  • It has already been written in broadcast style and
  • Any linkages arid back-grounding required has been done.

The pool copy is distributed among all editors compiling different bulletins. The editors preparing the pool copy also constantly keep a tab of important developing stories and revise and update them. They also prepare round-ups of important events and happenings such as elections, train accidents, clashes, floods, bomb blasts and other disturbances.

Compiling News Bulletins.

Keeping in view the duration of each bulletin and the interest of the target audience, the editors who compile the bulletin further select and prune the news items. They prepare the bulletins and send them to the Language Units and the External Services Units where language editors translate the news items and put out in their languages. News in different languages should be written keeping in view the diction, style and flow of the language. The language bulletin should also keep in mind the requirements, tradition and culture of the people.

Selecting the Headlines.

After the bulletin is prepared, the Editor decides which items apart from the lead story are to be headlined. Generally, the Editor selects headlines keeping in view the interest of the listeners. All bulletins have different headlines. The headlines given for Urdu bulletin will not be the same for Oriya bulletin. Radio headlines should be brief and written in simple language. Headlines are generally repeated as quite often many listeners tune in late and only from the repeat headlines do they know the important news of the day.

All items which figure in the headlines must be included in the news bulletin. Details about the main news items are provided after the headlines are read.

Use of Spoken Language in the News Bulletins on Radio.

Radio news bulletin should be clear, precise and to the point. Sentences should be short and direct. Brevity is essential as there is a time limit. In a 10 minute news bulletin covering world, national and regional news, there will be about 1000 to 1100 words. News should be in crisp and easily understood language.

Clarity through the use of simple words.

News for radio bullet should be written in simple language as everyday speech. For example, write “The work has started” in stead of “the work has commenced”, “The play has ended” instead of “terminated”. “Officialese” should not be used in bulletins (officialese is the language used in official press notes). The words chosen should create visual images in the mind “Roads are under water” or “The telegraph poles have been uprooted” or “The bridges have been washed away” sound better than “The communications have been disrupted”. Say “admitted into the hospital” or “reduced to a minimum” instead of “hospitalized” or “minimized”.

Short Sentences.

Never use long sentences in radio bulletin. Do not use complex sentences. Avoid subordinate clauses. Sentences should be written in 18 to 20 words. Split the long sentences. Put only one idea into one sentence. A news items should not be more than 90 or 100 words. Some items can be even shorter.

Present Tense.

The present tense should be used wherever it is possible say “They have shifted to the new center” instead of saying “They shifted to the new center”, Say “The President says the country is making progress” instead of” The President said the country was making progress.”

Try to use minimum figures. Too many figures confuse the listeners. Also, use round figures. Say “about 50 crore” and not “513,879,968”. Explain technical words. For example, the right of Habeas Corpus. This means that the authorities must bring the suspect before the Judge. Do not use sound clashes like “the building was built by a local builder”. Rewrite the sentence to “the storehouse was the work of a local builder”.

The arrangement in news writing is the reverse of the literary style of writing. The lead, or the climax, should come first in the news bulletin. Once you have written the intro, the rest of the item takes shape quickly. Leave optional points towards the end of the story so that if your editors are running out of time, they can delete these without any difficulty.

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