We did a test in class, and I saw this sentence below.

Read the text and cross out the extra word (maximum one per line).

  • some of the lines are correct
  • if the line is correct put a √ at the end of the line.

    1. safe. Many children feel scared because of
    2. news stories of child murders. Children
    3. feel safer because of their parents always know where they are.

I crossed out the word "stories" but my teacher marked it incorrect, so I expostulated with him.

Maybe for him, these two words looked the same, but I argued that "you can not know for sure what an American or a British would choose."

So, in order to end the dispute, I'd like to find out what native speakers think about it.

  • What is the difference between “news” and “news stories”?
  • Are they interchangeable? Shouldn't have I crossed out “stories”?
  • 2
    Can you provide a little more detail? Can you explain what the disagreement between you and your teacher was about? Could you tell us where you saw this headline? Is there a link? This could make an interesting question but it needs more "meat" (substance).
    – Mari-Lou A
    Sep 19, 2018 at 6:43
  • 1
    My take on it would be that a news story gives more background information (about the circumstances and the people involved) than might be given in a TV or radio news bulletin. Sep 19, 2018 at 16:19
  • Without knowing the context it's impossible to say which is appropriate.
    – Hot Licks
    Sep 20, 2018 at 12:14
  • @Hot Licks I added the link in description and please remove your -1
    – De Bill
    Sep 20, 2018 at 12:32
  • Let's give the kid a break. He's only 13-years old. What were you doing at 13?
    – Lambie
    Sep 20, 2018 at 18:56

1 Answer 1


What I would write is highly dependent on context. The two terms, while related, are rather different.

The word news refers to the general events of the day or any information revealed. The Oxford Living Dictionaries gives these definitions:



[mass noun]

  1. Newly received or noteworthy information, especially about recent events.

    ‘I've got some good news for you’

    1.1 (the news) A broadcast or published report of news.

    ‘he was back in the news again’

    1.2 (news to) informal Information not previously known to (someone)

    ‘this was hardly news to her’

    1.3 A person or thing considered interesting enough to be reported in the news.

    ‘Chanel became the hottest news in fashion’

A news story, on the other hand, is a single piece of news as reported. Dictionary.com gives this definition:

news story


  1. a news report of any length, usually presented in a straightforward style and without editorial comment.

The news, whether reported on television, radio, or in a newspaper, will undoubtedly consist of multiple stories: the latest scandal in Washington, the latest scandal in Hollywood, a cat rescues a fireman stuck in a tree, and so on. Each of these is a single news story.

Without more context, it would be difficult to say which should be used; they are not the same thing.

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