Covering the Elections
A good story contains the answers to the questions: Who? How? What? Where? When? and Why?
In election reporting, these questions help define the basic content of a news story.
WHO is the candidate for which party in this area?
HOW does the candidate intend to keep the promises?
WHO is funding the candidate's campaign?
The basic principles of journalism
Fair / Balance
- Is the story fair on all parties?
- Have these citizens been given a chance to have their voices heard?
- Is the manner in which the different parties’ have been represented fair on them?
- Would anyone party covered in a story feel that they have been misrepresented?
- What kind of language have we used to describe the different parties, their positions, interests and concerns?
- Have we been fair to the public? Have they been given all of the information they need to make informed decisions about what is going on?
- Have you got all of the facts straight?
- Have you verified information presented in the story?
- Is the source credible? Do they know enough about the issues to be able to provide credible information?
- Does the source have a vested interest in the issue? If so, is the source likely to be manipulating information for his/her own purposes?
- Is there an independent source you can get this information from?
- Would a variety of sources say the same thing?
- Have you do not describe people, places and events accurately,
- What will be the impact of our story?
- How will parties respond?
- Whose interests have you served in covering a story in a particular way? Has your primary goal been to serve your audience as well as possible or have you tried to accommodate some other interest group?
- Has the story been given the treatment it is worth?
- Have you verified your facts?
- What will be the impact of your reporting on your future credibility as a reliable source of information?
- Have you used honest, legal methods to obtain the news.- Avoid gifts from politicians.