By Ted White
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Additional info for Broadcast news : writing, reporting, and producing
There was, indeed, one essential point to learn about rewriting wire copy. “Look,” I said, “there actually is one thing that you can do when you are given that wire copy, that you must learn above all else. Get rid of it as fast as possible. Read it, digest it, and then discard it. ” You may find it difficult to surrender the wire copy and rely only on memory, but that is the only way to be certain that you rewrite what is basically newspaper-style wire copy into conversational broadcast copy. The wire 11 12 Chapter 2 Broadcast News Writing Style Figure 2-1 Rogers) Newsroom at WAFB-TV, Baton Rouge.
4 billion, was rounded off to “almost two and onehalf billion dollars,” It is best to round off figures and to eliminate use of the decimal in broadcast copy because the result is easier for most people to understand. 7 billion in each of the following four years,” was totaled and rounded off. The result, “the government is willing to spend almost 15 billion dollars over the next four years,” is easier for listeners to grasp because they don’t need to do the math in their heads. Notice, too, that dollars is spelled out in broadcast copy.
You also need to learn the vocabulary of broadcast journalism, terms such as wrap, voice-over, standup, and cutaway. Before you have finished working with this book, you will have learned about all these things and many more. This chapter starts with the mechanics of broadcast news writing, the small but essential details of preparing a script correctly. Learning these mechanics is like learning how to use the controls on a dashboard. Some Basics Computers have replaced typewriters in newsrooms and classrooms, but the formats for typing scripts still closely resemble those used for typewriters.