Keeping you informed and engaged

Style guide


What we publish

  • Hard news

  • Human interest stories

  • Video/audio news projects

  • Opinion pieces

  • Creative non-fiction pieces

The following guide has been designed to help you develop work appropriate for The Swanston Gazette.

Here, we outline our tones of voice and make some technical specifications.


Tone of Voice

Our publication objective is as follows: To produce news about current events, lifestyle and student culture. Keeping you informed and engaged.

We’re aiming to produce content that is student-focused and inclusive. That means a few things need to be kept in mind when thinking of ideas.

Accessibility

It’s also important to remember students at with varying levels of education and with a range of different specialities will be consuming your news. Just because you’re an expert in state-politics doesn’t mean everybody on campus is. Keep language accessible and explain any concepts that aren’t common knowledge clearly. A good communicator can be understood by many people.

Newsworthy

While we want as many perspectives as we can get, it’s important to identify what is actually newsworthy. Remember the 5 Golden Rules of Newsworthiness: Timing, Significance, Proximity, Prominence and Human Interest.

Inclusivity

We would love news from a broad range of topics reflective of a broad range of interests. However, we will not accept submissions that could make anyone feel targeted, threatened or seriously offended. Please avoid using language that could be considered racist, sexist, homophobic or discriminatory in any way. This includes body-shaming, ableism and classism.

Objectivity

Personal bias will always impact the type of content you produce. But, try and be as self-aware as possible. A good journalist considers all angles of a story. Not just the angle that fits their world view. Try and include at least two sources in every story with unique perspectives. This will help you ensure your work is always fair, balanced and accurate.

Student-focused

Not every story needs to be centred around life at RMIT. But, make sure you write about something students would be interested in.


Suggested word counts

Hard news should be no more than 600 words. Features can be longer but please keep it to under 1500 words.

Please Name your files with love

Like this… LASTNAMEfirstname_ddmmyy_title


Photography

Your story will need images to upload onto our website. We would love it if you could take your own photos as stock images are limited and often don’t look as good as the real thing when it comes to news stories. If you don’t have a camera, pitch the story well in advance and we’ll try and pair you up with a photographer! Obviously it’s a little different when reviewing entertainment. In this case, your editor will try and obtain a press kit.