Russia and Ukraine Reach Deal On Gas

Russia and Ukraine Reach Deal On Gas“, from Monday’s New York Times, uses formal language and a concise writing style that packs a good deal of information into a small amount of space.

The article kicks off with only the critical information: as indicated in the title, the prime ministers of Russia and Ukraine have reached an agreement concerning their natural gas dispute. It goes on to provide history of the dispute and past deals and, in the middle, goes into more detail concerning both Russia’s and Ukraine’s political investment in the issue and what the deal will mean for the two countries. Here, the article also provides quotes from experts, such as the European Commission and the Center for Strategic and International Studies, in order to provide authoritative political analysis. Towards the end, the story delves into more specific gas price information.

The story’s lede exemplifies the basics of a hard news lead, stating: “MOSCOW — The prime ministers of Russia and Ukraine agreed Sunday to resolve their gas dispute, with an understanding that prices would be pegged to the price of oil, but with a discount for 2009 that means Ukraine could pay little more than it did last year.” In just the first paragraph, the reader is given the who (the prime ministers of Russia and Ukraine), what (resolution of gas dispute), where (Moscow), when (Sunday) and even an allusion to how (an understanding that prices would be pegged to the price of oil).

Overall, this article provides more analysis than I would expect from a hard news story, but provides the short, summarizing lede and the inverted pyramid structure that lie at the heart of hard news.

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