Letter from the Editor: Opinion Submissions


The Appalachian Online

Carl Blankenship

Campus Community,

Part of The Appalachian’s mission is to encourage civic engagement on a campus level through our coverage. This extends to giving a voice to the community through our opinion section submissions.

I would like to publicly post and review our general policy on submitting letters to the editor and how to maximize your chances of getting a letter or a longer opinion published if you seek to submit one.

Our guidelines are as follows:

For letters:

Letters must follow the submission rules on the submission page.

If there are no ethical concerns with a letter we will publish it.

What qualifies as an ethical concern is at the discretion of the editor.

For op-eds:

At the discretion of the editor.

We have recently added a notice to our pitch and submission page noting that if you are not contacted about a letter to the editor submission within 48 hours you should then contact myself at editor@theappalachianonline.com.

We receive a tremendous amount of emails to most of our addresses each day, most of which are not in the realm of what we would consider publishing. Things tend to get overlooked in the process. If you have a legitimate inquiry and have not received correspondence, please follow up with us.

It has been brought to my attention that we are not in any way specific about story idea submissions or how to get a guest opinion in the publication. We are now revising the process and will be updating the submission page to provide guidelines to optimize your chances of getting in the publication. This is being added to improve the amount of publishable submissions we receive and hopefully improve on the civic engagement of our opinion section.

Please consider the following questions when submitting an idea:

Is this issue of particular relevance to the campus community?

What position do you speak from that makes you a good person to comment on this issue?

Is your piece free of logical fallacies, in particular personal attacks and strawmen arguments, and factual inaccuracies?

Are you willing to listen to suggestions from editors? We will never seek to dilute your opinion if we accept your piece, only to improve the quality of the argument and language.

The submission page will be updated with these considerations and other guidelines once we have fully reviewed the process.

We are also in the run up to our election issue, which will include opposing political opinions from campus groups and other election coverage. Look for it on stands around campus on Nov. 3.


Carl Blankenship,

Editor-in-Chief, The Appalachian