4.1.1 Critical evaluation of ways of analysing journalism texts: genre and news values

Galtung and Ruge’s theory on News Value

Media researchers Galtung and Ruge analysed international news stories to find out what factors they had in common, and what factors placed them at the top of the news agenda worldwide. This was done in 1965. They came up with the following list of news values.

  • Negativity
  • Proximity
  • Recency
  • Currency
  • Elite nations / persons
  • Uniqueness
  • Predictability
  • Personality
  • exclusiveness

A story which scores highly on each value is certain to come at the start of a TV news bulletin, or make the front page of a newspaper.

Apply the theory using at least two news stories as examples.

Story 1

This story is about Donald trumps speech at the state of the union.

This story has the following news values:


  • Elite Nations/Persons- USA/Donald Trump-The USA is an elite nation and Donald Trump is an elite person as he is the president of this country.
  • Recency- Published today- The article was published today, meaning that it is recent and is talking about recent subjects.
  • Predictability- State Of The Union happens every year meaning that this is a predictable event and article.
  • Personality- Donald Trump has an eccentric personality and people are familiar with it.
  • Cultural Proximity- USA and Britain have similar cultures meaning that it has cultural proximity.


Story 2

This story is about the problem of girls in African nations growing up in poverty are being forced into marriage at the young age of 12 years old.

  • Negativity- Girls getting married at 12 which is a negative topic
  • Recency- Published yesterday meaning that it is recent and talking about recent events.
  • Uniqueness- Not a usual story as it is not reported a lot.
  • Human Interest- Focuses on a particular person which gives it an interest to the public.


Can These Apply For Magazines?

Depending on the magazine genre, most of these can be applied. For example, a 442 editor would look for stories that are predictable to fit in with what the audience expects, which means it will not have uniqueness but will have predictability.

What Is A Magazine Genre?

A genre is a category based on similarities in content and style. Two media products can be categorised as the same genre if they are similar in significant ways. Examples of different genres are: sport, film and tv, fashion, lifestyle, travel. All these genres have specifics unique to that genre.

Neale’s Theory Of Repetition And Differences

‘Steve Neale suggests that certain features have to be repeated in two products that belong to the same genre, but there must also be a difference between the two products. Without both repetition and difference, a product will not be popular with an audience. Neale suggests innovation and creativity are key to success.’ (Shelina’s Powerpoint) This means that in order to be successful, there must be similarities between products that fit with the codes and conventions of that genre but also differences in order to make it unique and offer something else to the other product and bring something else to the table.

Screen Shot 2018-03-08 at 10.20.57

These music magazines apply Neale’s theory as they all contain a Masthead, cover lines, images, colours, adverts and a barcode. This is using the repetition to keep the audience of that genre interested. They also have differences in order to be unique, which includes: Different colours, different artists, different fonts and and different layout which includes the Masthead, cover lines and photos. this is to keep the audience of that genre interested and bring something new to it.


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