It seems like there has been some recent confusion regarding our public forum policy. We do not restrict letters to the editor to a select group of people. In general we try to get in as many letters as we can. That being said we still require all submissions to follow our guidelines. Here (in part) are the long-standing public forum guidelines the Tribune follows:
• Length: Submissions may not exceed 30 column inches which is no more than about 600 words.
• Contact: Although only name (affiliation if appropriate) and home town are printed, all letters must contain at least a daytime phone number and a current address including city of residence. E-mail addresses, although nice to have are not sufficient.
• Submitter: Letters must be from a specifically named individual, not a fictional name or alias. Initials are not acceptable unless that is how the community knows and address you. The individual can be part of a group but there must always be an individual’s name(s) assigned to a letter. Anonymous letters will not run.
• Submission Method: Submissions can be made via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, via mail at PO Box 228, Great Bend or dropped off in person at 2012 Forest Ave. If you have concerns about whether or not we received your letter, contact us. Sometimes delivery systems fail.
• Political: Candidates currently running for office may not submit letters.
• Frequency: Multiple submissions may be made by the same author; however, we will not run a “series” of letters.
• Thank yous: Letters must be generic in nature and not contain individual or business names.
• Other: Letters must be in good taste and must be the author’s original work. Letters must (in our opinion) not be legally actionable and letters may not take a particular business or private individual to task. We reserve the right to edit letters for clarity, content, and length. Profanity will be edited out. Available public forum space is designated on a first-come (approved)-first-served basis.
Even though our public forum policies are quite generous, it is ultimately our right to reject any letter or ban any author for any reason. We do our best to work with submitters and to this date, there are no authors on a permanent ban list.
If you want to share your opinion, thanks or just about anything else on your mind and your submission does not meet our public forum criteria, check out our advertising policies. They are even more generous but note we do our best to avoid printing material that is libelous.
We appreciate the effort you make in meeting our public forum guidelines.
Keep those letters coming.