Semiotic Laboratory - News


"Only the person who understands what the text is supposed to be answering can understand it correctly."
(Manfred Muckenhaupt)

When writing a report, journalists are guided by the four "W's" and the "H": Who? Where? Why? When? How?
Our dialogue with the news text could begin with these five questions in order to examine how news reports are put together. The questions that we can ask depend on the kind of event.
In this module we are concerned with monologue texts as presented by news readers, with the sequencing of the pictures and the news trailer.
Are there differences in and with news presentation?

ARD       arte
CNN       AL Jazeera
NTV       ORF01
PRO7       RAI
RTL       RTL2
ZDF       ZDF

News Trailers in Comparison:
Broadband Video (Real Media)



Videos with the friendly permission of the broadcasting companies

1. How is the image window constructed?
2. Which colour is dominant?
3. Are the scale of the scene different?
4. How different are the clothes, make-up and studio design?
5. What expectations are awakened?
6. Is the theme formulated as a headline?
7. Which of the headlines are formulated factually and which in tabloid press style?
8. Is the location geographically apparent?
9. What information about the subject can be gleaned from the images? Is the information helpful?
10. How is the news presented?
11. What is the content?
12. Who is addressed by the news? Target groups?
13. How helpful is this information?
14. What feeling do the pictures give?
15. What impression is intended to be transmitted?
16. What effect does the music have?
17. How is the text spoken? Are their recognisable differences?
18. Which programmes show more film material?
19. Which programme has the shorter reports?
20. Which news subjects are to be found in both programmes, which in only one? Why?
21. How long are the reports?
22. How many reports do the individual stations send?

Television as contemporary history: The ARD News Bulletin (OnlineArchiv)
Preparing information over the years. ARD annual review 1952 - 2001 - "Fifty years of moving images. Every epoch has its own language, it's own view of things, it’s own way of writing history. The film and texts are contemporary documents…they speak for their times."