What Makes News: Some General Facts About News and Why It Matters

The news that was circulating around the world this week was that a woman died after being given the wrong steroid treatment for a heart condition. This woman, identified as Bethany Bell, had been scheduled for an evaluation for congestive heart failure by the Palm Beach Gardens Surgery Center on Tuesday, but died a day later at her home while at the hospital. According to the Palm Beach Gardens Police Department, detectives were called to the home just before noon on Tuesday after a neighbor told them that they had heard loud music coming from the house. Upon entering the home, Bell, who was pronounced dead on the scene, was unresponsive and did not respond to the call for assistance. Bell’s death is currently being investigated as a possible drug overdose. According to the police, tests are underway at the Palm Beach Gardens Medical Examiner’s Office and toxicology reports are pending.


A newsworthy event makes news, but sometimes a story that makes the front page can have other meanings. For example, when a young girl drowns in a swimming pool and the cause of death is not immediately known, this event makes the front page of many newspapers. However, when the same girl returns days later, lifeless and with a large scar on her head, her story does not make the front page of many publications. Although it is tragic that this little girl lost her life, the public’s lack of interest in her death serves as a stark reminder that what matters to us most, our own life and well-being, cannot be hindered by the events and circumstances of others.

What makes news stories different? When someone is arrested and charged with the heinous crime of child molestation, it can make national and even international news. But, when a local news station covers the story, it may be significant and important, but it does not draw the same widespread attention. This is due to the public’s own interest in the lives of local people and the different events and happenings that happen around them. As such, whether you are a resident of Toronto or an expat living in Brisbane, one story makes the news and another is ignored.