Guidelines for Letters to the Editor

                                                                                     Reprinted from the October 2017, edition of the Stockbridge Community News

Have a strong feeling about something you read or that is occurring in the community? Write a letter to the editor. Letters exist to provide a forum for public comment or debate. A letter to the editor is meant to express your opinion or point of view about an article you have read or topic of importance to you.

How to send Stockbridge Community News a Letter to the Editor:

E-mail: stockbridgecommunitynews@gmail.com or mail: Stockbridge Community News, P.O. Box 83, Gregory, MI 48137.

Include: Your full name, city, state, phone number and the headline or the topic on which you are commenting. Someone from SCN may call to verify you really wrote the letter. SCN does not print anonymous letters.

Understand: Letters may be edited for length, grammar, Associated Press style and accuracy.

Additional Guidelines:

  • Be timely: Letters regarding an article will be accepted up to a month after its posting or publication.
  • Be clear: Make one main point.
  • Be concise: 1- 3 paragraphs, 50-150 words. Short letters show confidence in your position.
  • Be accurate: Letters that are factually inaccurate are not printed.
  • Avoid personal attacks: Show respect for the opposite opinion. Being rude may cause people to disagree with you on principle.
  • Proofread: Re-read your letter. Check for grammar and spelling mistakes. If possible, ask another person to read your letter for accuracy and clarity.
  • Don’t worry if your letter is not printed: Even if it is well written, it might not be printed if it addresses the same issue as letters already printed, and space is tight on SCN’s print editions.
  • In your correspondence, please use the following format:

Heading:

To the Editor: (If writing directly to the writer, substitute Dear Mr./Ms. ___)

Re: “headline” and date of article

Body:  1 to 3 paragraphs

Closing
: Your full name, city, state, zip and phone number

Note on posting online comments vs. writing a letter to the editor:

  • Online editions, in addition to inviting readers to write “letters to the editor,” also allow readers to post comments directly below articles and on the Facebook page.
  • People are for the most part permitted to comment anonymously.
  • “Comments” differ from “letters to the editor” in that there are no specific guidelines, except to refrain from profanity and the stipulation that inappropriate comments may be deleted or will not be approved for posting by the website administrator.

Remember when posting any comments online in any form — if you are not sure if you should post it, don’t post it.

The above policy was adapted from guidelines published in Student News Daily

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