Do you know how ridiculously easy it is to get your letter to the editor published by The Tri-City News?
It's so ridiculously easy that I've used the phrase "ridiculously easy" three times in the first two paragraphs of this piece.
And to make it even easier, I'll tell you how to do it.
But first, some background:
The Tri-City News has presented the views of its readers in the form of letters to the editor in virtually every print edition during the paper's 35 years of serving the residents of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Anmore and Belcarra.
As our operation has evolved over the last 20 years to include a vibrant online presence, including our website and social media channels, we've also posted those letters that are fit to print at tricitynews.com even as many more of our readers express their opinions by commenting under stories on our Facebook page.
In the last 14 months, however, we've gone further. The Tri-City News made a conscious shift to become a digital-first news organization while, in January 2019, becoming a weekly publication in print.
(An aside: That shift has been highly successful as we boosted our online audience by more than 80% between 2018 and 2019, and remained the profitable publication we've been throughout the ups and downs of our industry. And the digital growth continues into 2020, with January a record month for pageviews and February set to eclipse that mark by a sizable margin.)
What does that mean for prospective letter writers? It means that while we typically publish two to three letters each Thursday in our print edition — space in the paper is always at a premium — we publish many more each week at tricitynews.com (more than 20 so far in February, for instance).
In fact, we publish most of the letters sent to us by residents of the Tri-Cities and a few of those are additionally promoted on our Facebook page, where others can offer comment.
Now, back to how ridiculously easy it is to get a letter published:
1) Write your letter (we especially love letters on Tri-City topics). Keep it concise (300 to 400 words tops), make sure it's free from vulgarities and insulting language, and remember that facts and opinions are different things.
2) Go to https://www.tricitynews.com/opinion/submit-a-letter-to-the-editor and fill in the form. Alternately, email your letter to firstname.lastname@example.org, making sure to include your name, home address and phone number (we'll only use your name and city if we publish your letter).
E voila, c'est tout!
Not every letter sent this way will be published but, based on our experience over the last year or so, most will.
Thanks very much for reading The Tri-City News and tricitynews.com, for interacting with us on our social channels and for writing us letters.
And keep ’em coming.