Thursday, April 1, 2010

How To #1 - An Approach to Annotation and Analysis of a Newspaper Article

Pic by G.W. aka P.A.
How to #1 ~ An Approach to Annotation and Analysis of a Newspaper Article
When evaluating a newspaper article, it is important to ask questions and highlight evidence.

1. Who or what organization is the creator of the article?
2. What is the context of the article? e.g. cultural/political or is it a public issue? AND what type of article is it to suit the context? Editorial? Feature article? Opinion piece?
3. What newspaper published this article and when? (This will impact on style! e.g. "Herald Sun" = tabloid and "The Age" = broadsheet + often weekend articles are longer than weekly ones.)
4. What attention-getting/PERSUASIVE techniques are used? AND Are they effective?
5. Is the language formal or informal? Name examples. Does the language suit the purpose?
6. Is the language simple or complex? Everyday language or metaphorical, descriptive language? Name examples.
7. Is the article structured? Complex? Confusing? Gathers momentum or loses direction?
8. Are graphics included AND do they enhance or detract from the article?
9. Does the article represent a "small" sphere of interest or is it informative to an audience on a larger scale? Explain and describe what audience would connect with this article and why.
10. Is the article tasteful or distasteful? Name examples.
11. Does the article offer insights into the future or is it a passing piece of information? Explain.
12. What belief systems or points of view are presented, or, (just as important), not presented in the message? Explain.
13. How will different people/different age groups interpret the message?
14. What is the purpose of the message? Is it clear? challenging?
15. What is the tone? Does it change? When and why?
16. Is the article conclusive or would you expect that there may be a follow-up article? What are the cues for your answer?
17. Does the article have historical, political, economic or social value? Explain.
18. Is the article a reliable resource for its topic? Why or why not?
19. Media messages use specific language and strategies unique to the media industry. Do you recognise common features? e.g. short paragraphs and sentences.
20. Discuss the title of the article. Hidden or double meanings? Paradox? Satiric? Metaphor? Cliche? Evasive? Suits the article?
To evaluate its success, consider the strengths and weaknesses of the article!

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