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"The Sun" uses alliteration (a lot) such as "mad maverick" to describe
Raja in their headline. This attracts people's attention more than
"mad man" because it is more exciting and interesting. In their
article on the shoe bomber "The Sun" very rarely uses Raja's real name
to identify him instead they use names like "demon" or "crazed suicide
bomber", "the maniac" and other de-humanising names.
"The Times" uses very little of these techniques unless they are in
quotes, instead they use clever puns and subtle alliteration in their
headlines such as "shoe bomber sparks travel terror alert". This
arrests the reader's attention and also informs them as to what the
story is about. It is successful journalism in that it compels the
reader to read on and has a humorous twist in it.
Between "The Times" and "The Sun" the amount of fact and the amount of
opinion varies. In "The Sun" there is a lot more opinion than fact,
for example it has a whole page on the shoe bomber containing a huge
headline taking up half the page quoting "he fought like a dog but we
tied him down" and it only has a small amount of writing, the majority
of it is quotes from primary and secondary sources. Although these can
be reliable, sometimes they trick the reader into understanding
something that in fact is not what it seems. An example of this is
"The Sun's" trick of attribution, "Scotland yard said the man,
believed to be a recent convert to Islam, was travelling under the
name of Richard Reid and WAS British." This gives us the false
impression that Scotland Yard had said that Raja was believed to be a
recent convert to Islam but in fact they said nothing of the sort.
This has the damaging effect of associating Raja with the attacks of
September 11th in New York. "The Sun" is sensationalising the story
implying that this man is another Islamic extremist and for the reader
he is portrayed as even more of a "demon".
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I think that they use quotes to bulk up the text so that there's not
as much room for facts and they select which facts to use according to
which ones will back up the rest of their story.
"The Times" however uses a lot of facts and little opinion and uses
opinion to back up its facts. An example of this is "a preliminary
X-ray at Logan airport had found what appeared to be the explosive C4.
"They X-rayed the shoe and found that in the heel there were holes
drilled, and there looked to be a detonator wire, and the substances
consistent with C4,". Instead of reporting eyewitness accounts they
substantiate their story with evidence and expert opinion such as that
of Scotland Yard, the FBI, aviation experts e.t.c. "The Times" also
writes in a straightforward, informal way whereas "The Sun" muddles it
by putting unnecessary writing in like the "timetable of 9-hour
nightmare" that is just put in to fill up space and is pointless.
Another issue of space is how much space the picture image on the
front cover takes up. In both "The Times" and the "The Sun" the same
picture is used of Tariq Raja's scarred and bruised face but in very
different proportions and they have different effects.
In "The Sun" almost the entire front page is dedicated to this story
and the huge image of a scary Tariq Raja that is covering the whole
page immediately grabs your attention.
In "The Times" this story shares the page with another completely
detached story of Christmas carols in the cathedral, which has a large
picture of "girls from the Salisbury cathedral choir rushing to a
rehearsal". The shoe bomber article has a miniscule picture of Tariq
that isn't scary at all and if you blinked you would miss it. This
shows that the story ranks differently on importance to the different
papers, "The Sun" thinks it is a very valuable story and it will sell
them more papers so they let it go on for three pages but "The Times"
obviously thinks that the story on Salisbury Cathedral should get
priority on space because it is of more interest to their readers.
As these two newspapers are aiming at different audiences the way they
write and the things they include in their text differ to the reader
they are trying to interest. "The Sun" uses easy-to-digest language
and some humour in short, interesting sentences because they are
aiming at somebody who wants a quick, easy and enjoyable read. "The
Times" wants to be more detached and just give the reader something
informative, factual yet interesting to read and its not repetitive so
the reader wont get bored.
My conclusion is that if you want to read something that will
entertain you and quickly inform you then "The Sun" would be your best
option but if you want something that will give you facts and still
manage to be interesting then go for "The Times".