Resources for writing letters to the editor

Guidelines for Submitting Letters to the Editor

Elements of a Letter to the Editor

Sample Letter to the Editor

Published Letters to the Editor

 

Guidelines for Submitting Letters to the Editor

Daily News

Email address: voicers@edit.nydailynews.com

Include full name, address and phone number. (This information will be used for verification purposes only). The Daily News reserves the right to edit letters.

New York Post

Email address: letters@nypost.com or go to www.nypost.com/sendletter and submit the online form.

You must provide your first name, last name, email address, and the subject or issue you are writing about. Maximum number of words is 200. They reserve the right to edit and condense all letters.

New York Times

Email address: letters@nytimes.com

Letters to the editor should only be sent to the Times, and not to other publications. They do not publish open letters or third-party letters.

Letters for publication should be no longer than 150 words, must refer to an article that has appeared within the last seven days, and must include the writer's address and phone numbers. No attachments, please.

They cannot return or acknowledge unpublished letters. Writers of those letters selected for publication will be notified within a week. Letters may be shortened for space requirements.

Newsday

Go to www.newsday.com/opinion/submit-your-letter-1.2516352 and submit the online form.

Before submitting your letter to the editor, please type your name at the end, as though you are signing it. If you leave your name off, Newsday will assume you intend to comment anonymously and will not print your letter. Letter cannot be more than 5,000 characters.

Staten Island Advance

Go to www.silive.com/mailforms/advanceletters/ and submit the online form.

Letters should be 200 or fewer words to be considered for publication in the print edition of the Advance (500 or fewer words for the on-line version only). The following MUST be included with your letter or it will not be considered for publication:

  • Real full name
  • Complete address (including house number, street and town)
  • Daytime phone number

Wall Street Journal

Email address: wsj.ltrs@wsj.com

Address comments to Timothy Lemmer, the letters editor. Make sure to include your city and state in the email.


Elements of a Letter to the Editor

  • Respond promptly — do not wait more than a couple of days to comment on a newspaper article
  • Facts and figures must be accurate — do the research
  • Be concise, focused and polite — provide a succinct single argument if disagreeing with something in an article
  • Create a title — place in subject line
  • Address the letter as “Dear Editor”
  • Place the text in the body of the email — no attachments
  • Bcc your email to: retirees@uft.org
  • Limit your letter to two or three paragraphs — 200 word limit
    • Paragraph 1: State the purpose of the letter — name the article you are responding to
      Introduce the problem and sum up your objection — make your point early
    • Paragraph 2: Write a few sentences to support your view — cite sources, provide documentation
    • Paragraph 3: Summarize your argument — end with a clever line
  • Include your name, address, email address and phone number in the email — you may request your name not be published, but you must provide all information so that the newspaper can validate who you are

Sample Letter to the Editor

Original Letter sent by Retiree to the New York Times

To The Editor:

Are you sure that the Michael R. Bloomberg who wrote "Limit Pay, Not Unions" is the same person who is the mayor of New York City? I only ask because the author of the letter advocates negotiating with the unions to solve fiscal problems. With regard to the schools and the UFT, Mayor Bloomberg has done quite the opposite. The mayor has unilaterally:

  • imposed a wage freeze
  • sought legislation to end tenure and alter layoff rules
  • closed schools
  • refused to assign educators in the ATR pool into positions

The mayor has constantly sought to go around the union. On one of the rare occasions he has negotiated with the UFT, the heinous "rubber rooms" were eliminated. Instead of releasing hit lists, the mayor should be working with UFT President Michael Mulgrew on a way to avoid layoffs.

If only the mayor and the author were the same person.

Charles Friedman

Final copy of letter published in New York Times

To the Editor:

Are you sure that the Michael R. Bloomberg who wrote “Limit Pay, Not Unions” is the same person who is the mayor of New York City?

I ask only because the author of the article advocates negotiating with the unions to solve fiscal problems. With regard to the schools and the United Federation of Teachers, Mayor Bloomberg has done quite the opposite, such as unilaterally closing schools and imposing a wage freeze. The mayor has constantly sought to go around the union.

On one of the rare occasions that he has negotiated with the U.F.T., the heinous “rubber rooms” (where teachers accused of wrongdoing or incompetence could spend years doing nothing on full pay) were eliminated. Instead of working on hit lists of teachers, the mayor should be working with the union on a way to avoid layoffs.

Charles Friedman
New York, Feb. 28, 2011

The writer is a retired teacher.

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