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We’re a little less than two weeks away until voters can head to the polls and submit their ballots during the early voting period. There are a few additional guidelines letter to the editor writers should be aware of during this year’s election season. Early voting begins Oct. 16 and election day is Nov. 5.
• The publication cutoff for endorsement letters is Oct. 25; no endorsements will be published in the edition immediately preceding the election (Nov. 1).
• All letters must be signed with the writer’s name and hometown; no anonymous letters or pseudonyms. If a letter is written on behalf of a group or organization, the chair/president/designated representative can sign it and an editor’s note beneath the letter signature can explain that it represents the group’s collective view.
• All political endorsement letters are held to the letters length limit; none appear as longer guest columns.
• No personal attacks or unverifiable factual claims. A letter claiming that Candidate X is ineligible because he was convicted of a felony in Rhode Island could trigger an investigation and a story, but the claim wouldn’t appear in a letter until and unless it’s been verified.
As always, our usual letter to the editor policy guidelines should be followed this month. Letters that promote a commercial product, contain either libelous material, personal attacks on individuals or vulgar language, and those addressed to a third party, will not be published. Consumer complaints and letters containing unverifiable factual claims are ineligible for publication.
Letters should be no more than 350 words, must be signed and should include the writer’s address. A telephone number, which will not be published, should be included for verification purposes.
Letters selected for publication may be edited and all letters become the property of The Wake Weekly.