Doing a News Analysis
First, find a newspaper article that you have reason to
believe was generated as part of a public relations publicity
campaign. Your news article must be from a Chicago newspaper. Use
your imagination as to whose PR campaign it might be a part of
(I'm not going to second-guess you, unless it's a train wreck!)
Photocopy the article onto an 8-1/2 x 11 sheet -- if it
doesn't fit, it's not critical, so long as I can see most of the
headline and read the first few paragraphs... online students can
find the online version (for example, at www.suntimes.com, or
chicagotribune.com)... what's important is that
you give me the article on 8-1/2x11 paper (or online) -- not
the original clipping. (Online students can do the
assignment via email and supply a link to the story -- or they can
bring me a hard copy.)
Then do a one-page analysis, "filling in the blanks" for
the following questions:
In the upper left hand corner: Your name, and the
date the assignment is due.
Article headline, source, and date
The 5 W's --
Who is the story about? (Do you think this
person could be the PR source of the story?)
What are they doing (or having done to them?)
Where is it all happening?
When did it or will it take place?
Why is it happening? -- How is it significant?
The Message -- -- in a nutshell, what
is the story trying to say? ...and since we have identified this as
the successful result of a press release, What was the take-home point that the PR
writer wanted you to understand?
As you can see, this will all fit simply on a single typewritten page.