Guidelines

The opinion pages of BaytoBayNews.com belong to our readers.

Our role is to offer a safe and lively forum where our readers can enjoy a civil and informed discussion of public issues.

Our editors, ever mindful of purposeful neutrality, do not write editorials or take stances on public issues. We have faith in the public's ability to make good decisions if we provide them a solid understanding of the issues and a place to debate and develop their opinions.

As long as opinions are expressed truthfully, and with civility, a robust variety of viewpoints will be welcome.

Government cannot pass any law that abridges freedom of speech or freedom of the press. We can, however, set standards for what we publish.

Readers should review our Civility Checklist for how to best express their thoughts on the opinion pages of our newspapers and BaytoBayNews.com.

And, assuming you agree with the points in the checklist, we would appreciate it if you took the Civility Pledge.

As a Civility Advocate, we would welcome your regular participation in discussions, even if it simply a comment under one of our stories or a brief response to the Question of the Day.

The following are ways you can participate:

Letters to the Editor

Ideally, letters offer reactions to timely issues or concerns and express ideas for solutions.

We recommend letters be brief – 250 words, at most.

We reserve the right to edit all letters for style, brevity, space, and clarity. Use the Submit a Letter form. Or email your letter to civiltalk@iniusa.org.

Please include your name and hometown. Contact information is needed for confirmation and for any questions we may have. We would also welcome a picture of you to accompany your letter.

Commentaries

The difference between a letter to the editor and a guest commentary is that writers of guest commentaries should have some special expertise or experience on the subject, and/or have done an especially good job of researching and presenting a balanced analysis.

The goal should be to offer the community a greater understanding of issues our communities face. And, each commentary should have the goal of offering solutions that would make our community an even better place to live, work and play.

When commentaries are pitched to our editors, we appreciate bio information that may add to the author’s credibility. We also request a photo of the author.

When outside material or data is being presented, please share the source with us for verification.

Ideally, commentaries will be 700 words or less. Email commentaries to civiltalk@iniusa.org.

Comments

Under our stories, you will find comments sections.

BaytoBayNews.com employs tools from our partner World Table to accept and review reader comments. Readers can sign up, using an email address, or an account from Facebook, Twitter, or Google.

The comments will be reviewed by a moderator to see if they meet the requirements outlined in the Civility Checklist.

Editors of our newspapers often glean comments for use in the “Speak Up” section of our newspapers. Also, check BaytoBayNews.com daily for the Question of the Day and comment.