Comparing News Reports -

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GCSE English Language.

Comparing News Reports –

“Disaster In The Alps.”

By Samantha Espin.10A

        The idea of this assignment is to compare and contrast two newspaper reports on the same incident. The articles concerned are taken from The Mirror and The Times, both published on the 4th of February 1998.


The Mirror is considered a tabloid newspaper. Tabloid papers usually cover all national and international news. They often contain more scandalous, gossipy stories or personal news items.


The Times is considered a broadsheet newspaper. These are the largest type of newspaper and cover all national and international news in a serious, informative way.


The basic story found in both articles is that a US Marine Fighter Jet sliced through a cable car wire in the Dolomites in Italy. 20 people were killed, as the cable car fell 300 feet.


The Mirror article is aimed at a younger audience, with a lesser intelligence needed to understand it. The Times article is aimed at an older audience of a higher intelligence.


The language used in The Mirror is simple and easy to understand. It tends to include shorter words and sentences to increase its simplicity. It also uses very sensationalistic language, for example, “no survivors amid the tangled wreckage and bloodstained snow”. Whereas the language used in The Times is very formal and complex. It also writes from a neutral viewpoint so as to convey the story without bias.


The vivid language used in The Mirror has a greater impact on the reader than the plainer language used in The Times.


The Mirror article is split into 4 columns with a headline and a sub-heading. The headline is describing the situation – “20 skiers killed as jet slices cable wire”. The sub-heading however is more dramatic and typical of a tabloid newspaper. It reads – “Brits tell of horror in snow”.

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The Times article is also split into 4 columns, but only has one headline. It reads – “20 die in cable car after jets cut wire”. This heading is neutral and blames the accident on no one, yet from the words used in The Mirror; I can see that because they use the word “killed”, they are implying that it is somebody’s fault.  


The positioning of the headlines is again different in each paper. In The Mirror, it is to the top left-hand corner, above a picture and in a bold font. In The Times it is ...

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