journalese and newsroom terminologies
journalese and newsroom terminologies


The media profession, like all other prominent professions, is language-based. This is often referred to as jargon or technical terms associated with the field of work. For the media industry, and the technical language is known as Journalese. Journalese is a language used in the media industry. Journalese is the language of the art of journalism.
In this article, I will list the terminologies associated with the newsroom where reporters and writers usually domicile.

Newsroom Terminologies

  1. Add: Additional news matter to a story that has already been written or is about to be written.
  2. Assignment: It is an instruction given to a reporter to cover an event. Assignment is the day’s job given to a reporter to cover by his or her news editor or direct boss.
  3. Attribution: That’s the identity of the person who is mentioned in the story. It is only possible to attribute the source of a story that has provided the information in writing.
  4. Actuality: this is a live report in broadcasting.
  5. Airtime: The hour when a program is broadcast.
  6. Audio: Sound
  7. Background: Information that may be used by a writer entirely on his own responsibility and cannot be attributed even to a “reliable source”. The reporter can only use information given on background on his or her own risk.
  8. Banners: These are headlines written across or close to the top of the newspapers’ pages. Also known as a Streamer as well as a Streaming headline.
  9. Beat: The beat is the space that a reporter is assigned for coverage regularly. Beats can be area or subject. For instance, an event Correspondent has the event covered as their beat, and Energy Correspondent is a subject with issues associated with energy as his beat. In the US beats, beats can be thought of as an exclusive report.
  10. Break: This is when a news development becomes known and available.
  11. Beeper: A phone conversation or interview that is recorded for later playback on the air.
  12. Caps: This is a reference to uppercase or capital letters.

ATTRIBUTION : Press Association, Reporters’ Companion, Mencher (2010).

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