Letters to the editor; Changing with the times
The New Hampshire Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News have always taken pride in publishing as many letters to the editor as we can fit in the newspaper. Because of the tough stances taken by our editorial page, our policy has been to accept and publish every letter that meets our guidelines.
Our editorials hit hard. We are happy to have readers hit hard, too.
Today, our readers hit back in ways that were unimaginable when the letters policy was set 50 or more years ago. Readers can comment directly on our articles through UnionLeader.com, and comments are posted directly with the article rather than on a letters page in a separate paper days later. Readers also give us their feedback directly and instantly via email and social media, where they can even share their comments with thousands of other people.
While the volume of letters submitted to the newspaper varies, many of those come from people who do not want to comment on stories or opinions printed in the paper, but only on issues of personal interest to them.
To make sure that our opinion pages remain relevant, topical and valuable to readers, we are revising our letters policy to reflect this new reality. Though we will continue to give our readers a great deal of space to have their say, we will no longer publish every letter that meets our technical guidelines. Rather than publish everything that fits, we will select for publication the best letters from among those we receive.
So sharpen your arguments, dear readers. You are competing for limited and coveted space. If you want to see your letter in print, impress us! And don't forget, you still get to hit hard. - The Editors