A dateline is a brief piece of text included in
News is information
Information can be thought of as the resolution of uncertainty; it answers the question of "What an entity is" and thus defines both its essence and the nature of its characteristics. The concept of ''information'' ...
articles that describes where and when the story was written or filed,
though the date is often omitted. In the case of articles reprinted from
A news agency is an organization that gathers news
News is information
Information can be thought of as the resolution of uncertainty; it answers the question of "What an entity is" and thus defines both its essence and the nature ...
s, the distributing organization is also included (though the originating one is not). Datelines are traditionally placed on the first line of the text of the article, before the first sentence.
The location appears first, usually starting with the
A city is a large human settlement.Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routledge. It can be defined as a pe ...
in which the
A journalist is an individual trained to collect/gather information in form of text, audio or pictures, processes them to a news-worth form and disseminates it to the public. The act or process mainly done by the journalist is called journalism. ...
has written or dispatched the report. City names are usually printed in uppercase, though this can vary from one publication to another. The
Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, administrative region, subnational entity, first-level subdivision, as well as many similar terms, are generic names for geographical areas into which a particular, ...
A nation is a community of people formed on the basis of a common language, history, ethnicity, or a common culture, and, in many cases, a shared territory. A nation is more overtly political than an ethnic group; it has been described as "a fully ...
the city is in may follow, but they may be dropped if the city name is widely recognizable due to its size or political importance (a national capital
, for instance). The date of the report comes after, followed by an
The dash is a punctuation mark that is similar in appearance to the hyphen and minus sign but differs from these symbols in length and, in some fonts, height above the baseline. The most common versions of the dash are the endash , longer ...
surrounded by spaces, and then the article.
A typical newspaper dateline might read:
BEIRUT, Lebanon, June 2 — The outlook was uncertain today as ...
The same story if pulled from the
The Associated Press (AP) is an American Nonprofit organization, non-profit news agency headquartered in New York City. Founded in 1846, it operates as a cooperative, unincorporated association. Its members are U.S. newspapers and broadcasters. AP ...
(AP) wire might appear as:
BEIRUT (AP) — The outlook was uncertain today as ...
Datelines can take on some unusual forms. When reporters collaborate on a story, two different locations might be listed.
The Associated Press omits a dateline "when a story has been assembled from sources in widely separate areas". In other cases, the exact location may be unknown or intentionally imprecise, such as when covering
A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare. It is typically officially authorized and maintained by a sovereign state, with its members identifiable by their ...
operations while on a
A ship is a large watercraft that travels the world's oceans and other sufficiently deep Sea lane, waterways, carrying goods or passengers, or in support of specialized missions, such as defense, research, and fishing. Ships are generally disti ...
at sea or following an invasion force, or when covering a press conference aboard an airplane.
The concept of a dateline has been adapted to
Television (TV), sometimes shortened to tele or telly, is a telecommunication medium used for transmitting moving images in monochrome (black and white), or in color, and in two or three dimensions and sound. The term can refer to a te ...
. Reporters on news programs might have their location mentioned in an introduction from the
A news presenter – also known as a newsreader, newscaster (short for "news broadcaster"), anchorman or anchorwoman, news anchor or simply an anchor – is a person who presents news during a news program on the television
"Here now from Albuquerque, New Mexico, is reporter Nigel Culpepper"
A field reporter might also end his stories by combining the location from where he filed the report with a "lockout" (the last thing a reporter says in the report, and includes his name and station ID, in addition to a news branding such as ''
''Eyewitness News'' is a style of television
Television (TV), sometimes shortened to tele or telly, is a telecommunication medium used for transmitting moving images in monochrome (black and white), or in color, and in two or three d ...
''); especially if the segment is recorded and not live. For example, the last bit of a report could sound like:
"... prompting an investigation into the matter. Richard Morris, BBC News, London."
A number of
current affairsCurrent affairs may refer to:
* Current Affairs (magazine), ''Current Affairs'' (magazine), a bimonthly magazine of culture and politics.
* Current affairs (news format): a genre of broadcast journalism
* An approxi ...
TV shows have '' dateline
'' as part of their name.