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Informing instead of interpreting: The report

How do you captivate your readership? Our copywriter Pamela shows you in her blog series "Five types of text - five ways to success". Today: the report.
Copywriter Pamela Schefer takes a close look at five text types in her blog series.

"The new estate in Rain captivates with its simple elegance and sun-drenched location. The picturesque paths through the lush green spaces designed by landscape architect Florian Fingerhut let residents forget that they are in a big city. The two- to three-storey buildings also have a village character and inspire with idyllic inner courtyards, bright rooms and generous floor plans. The architectural firm Hauser und Söhne has consistently implemented its vision of diverse outdoor meeting opportunities and sufficient privacy in the flats." Beautiful, isn't it? Texts like this are mainly found in advertising brochures. But information media would lose their respectability immediately if they published such a text. They are expected to report objectively, without judgement or interpretation.

Cookie-cutter approach

An objective report does not claim to be entertaining. It should inform about an event, examine the background and explain the context. The report is one of the simplest types of text and is structured according to a cookie-cutter approach. The central questions are: Who, Where, What, When and Why. The text refrains from judgemental and embellishing words and provides information on where the information comes from. If possible, all parties concerned have their say. This gives equal space to supporters and opponents of political issues, so that readers can form their own opinions. Subjective and evaluative statements are integrated as quotations.

Reports are used where credibility is central, such as in media releases. A flowery text is labelled as advertising by the media and hence, it is ignored.

Less empty phrases, more facts

If these tips are taken to heart, the estate mentioned at the beginning of this article will also make it into the media: "After two years of construction, the 82 rental apartments in the new estate in Rain will be ready for occupancy on 8 June 2021. The two- and three-storey buildings were planned by the architectural firm Hauser und Söhne, and the surrounding park was designed by landscape architect Florian Fingerhut. We wanted to create an oasis for the tenants far away from the city noise," Fingerhut explained at an information event. For this purpose, artificial hills were built and natural planting was used. There are opportunities to meet not only on the playgrounds and barbecue areas, but also in the eight inner courtyards. The park is open to the public. The balconies and terraces, on the other hand, cannot be seen from the outside. So there is no lack of privacy,' says Rolf Hauser of Hauser und Söhne. After the building project was delayed by appeals from residents, there are now many positive voices from the neighbourhood. For example, Kai Vontobel, a direct neighbour: 'After the noisy and dusty construction period, I'm glad that we neighbours will also be able to use the quiet and beautifully designed facility'."

Published on 25. March 2021 by Pamela Schefer