It may be hard to separate the objective reporting of news articles from editorials and other opinions in a newspaper. Typically, editorials appear in a specially labeled section to make it easier for readers to tell news articles from opinion pieces.
Reporting the News
News reporters gather factual information, explains a guide by "The Boston Globe" newspaper. The product of their observation and research is a news article, which intends to inform readers. Today, journalistic standards call for reporters to be as objective as possible, although this was not always the case, according to Kathryn Walbert for the University of North Carolina School of Education’s Learn NC. Different papers often express a viewpoint, but this is usually done by choosing which stories to cover and which information to present; a news article typically does not come right out and express opinion. You find news articles throughout a newspaper, most obviously on the front page.
Commenting on the Issues
An editorial, on the other hand, may be based in fact, but its main purpose is not to inform, but to express opinion. Most newspapers, including "The Boston Globe" and "The New York Times," group these opinion pieces in a special section, an Editorial Page and an Op-Ed page, "opposite the editorial." Other types of opinion pieces, such as sports columns or movie reviews, may appear in different sections, but they usually are labeled in some way to show that they are not objective news. Editorials are a special category of opinion pieces that express the viewpoint of an editor or, at larger papers, an editorial board; as such, they represent the opinion of the paper as a whole, according to guides by "The Boston Globe" and "The New York Times." Because editorials do not represent just one individual’s opinion, they usually don’t list an author’s name.
- Luca Francesco Giovanni Bertolli/iStock/Getty Images