How information is created

Understanding how information is created can help you know where to look for information, depending on your need.

As soon as an event occurs, it triggers an information cycle, which begins with immediate coverage on the Web, on television and on the radio. Newspapers and magazines also begin to provide coverage of the event and, as time goes by, additional information appears in scholarly journals and later in books.


Although the issue of September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks has been discussed at length, it nevertheless serves as a useful illustration of how information is created.
Only a few minutes after the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City, television, radio and Internet media begin reporting on the tragedy. It is immediate, factual coverage of the event as it unfolds.
Newspaper articles from around the world on September 12 report on the terrorist attacks. In addition, articles provide a chronology of events, opinions as to why the attacks occurred. Television, radio and the Internet continue to report on the aftermath of the tragedy. These sources provide more detailed coverage including timelines, substantiated facts, comparisons with other events, and brief analysis. Information may still be sketchy and superficial.
Weekly magazines publish special reports on the terrorist attacks. These current affairs magazines provide much more depth in the coverage of the event. Commentaries, pictorials and analyses are featured.
Scholars and experts in the field begin publishing articles in scholarly journals that focus on broader topics such as terrorism, economic consequences, social and cultural issues that remain divisive, public and foreign policy, defense, etc. Bibliographies are often included. Academics enter the discussion and begin to ponder the reasons behind an event including broader perspectives and analyses. There is also concern about the event's impact and consequences. Some research may have been conducted and reports published.
Scholarly articles are still published about the attacks. In addition, general and scholarly books about. These articles and books go beyond the attacks and provide in-depth information about their consequences on various aspects of society.