Breaking News: How To React To It And How To Pass It On


Breaking news is all the rage in broadcasting these days. All over the world people are bombarded with ‘breaking news’ signs popping up on the screens practically all the time, flashing tantalizingly, with presenters suddenly assuming that excited look that says: “Just you wait and see what’s coming next”.

It can be anything: from a plane going down or a train derailing to an announcement of the latest jobless figures or the rate of inflation or some celeb doing something outrageous, including kicking the bucket. It comes at you thick and fast, so it’s always a good idea to be prepared and respond to breaking news in a way that suits your situation best. Either in an emotional, over the top manner, to get other people to notice you, or in a laid back way, as if implying that you knew all along that this or that would happen.

Here are some tips on responding to breaking news items. If you are surrounded by others the initial reaction could be surprise, amazement, a manifested feeling of shock, with eyes widened and lower jaw dropping down, slowly. The wording can be anything in this case. ‘I can’t believe it, I simply can’t believe it: the inflation is up again!’ is acceptable or, if you’re an impressionable woman you can repeat, over and over again: ‘OMG, OMG, OMG!!!’ In certain cases strong language can be incorporated into the response to breaking news, with the F-word inserted here and there. But don’t overdo it with F-words or they lose their sparkle, so to speak.

If by chance you are caught by breaking news and there is no one around, dial a friend or a loved one and inform them about the latest development. You could say something like: “You’ll never believe what’s just happened!’ And then proceed excitedly with what you have just heard. Or you can say something like, “You know what they just reported on breaking news? The interest base rate has stayed the same!” Or whatever it is that breaking news would be about. The news should be related in an upbeat way, to make the occasion special.

For people who want to be seen by others as well-connected and informed, it is advised to respond to most breaking news with indifferences, saying things like: “I knew it would happen”, or “Didn’t I tell you it would happen” or “Saw it coming for ages”. It has to be said in a calm, collected way, suppressing any excitement that you might develop as a result of breaking news.

If, by any chance, you lead a solitary sort of life, as many people who watch the box religiously do, and you don’t have any friends you can always leave your home and approach total strangers and relate the news to them. It may look awkward in some instances but there is always a chance that you may bump into similarly inclined individuals who are keen news watchers and love a bit of breaking news. In this case the opportunities are endless.

It always makes sense to call several people after you learn the latest breaking news and share the exclusive information with them in a boisterous, energetic manner. Don’t forget, knowing your breaking news and breaking it first to your friends makes you look informed, sophisticated and well connected. It also fills your otherwise boring day with a sense of purpose.

Spreading breaking news can be fun for all the family, as some of you can call your friends while your relations text or send emails to people they know and tend to hang out with. And don’t forget Social Media, that great way of spreading breaking news that you’ve picked off the box, the radio or the web, while taking the credit for it. It makes you look abreast with world events, if the word ‘abreast’ is suitable in this case.

If you feel particularly adventurous on some days you can actually make up your own breaking news, by calling other people and turning the most conventional stories into throbbing breaking news items, if the word ‘throbbing’ can be used in this context. You can also exaggerate slightly the item in questions, as breaking news reporting is often forgiven for inaccuracies, being news that’s picked up in a hurry, delivered without any editing or checking. And as all the big TV news networks actually pick up most of their breaking news from other news providers, mostly press agency wires, makes the whole thing open for grabs by anyone.

Breaking news is not about news really. It is just a cunning way to make news look more exciting. But why not benefit from it and make your life just a little bit more adventurous by spreading the word.