A word on letters to the editor

On the Internet, you can register on any forum you like, with a fake name, and rant away. Be as disrespectful as you like. Make things up, rave like a lunatic. Anything goes.
In the newspaper biz we have to be more careful. We encourage letters to the editor, but can’t take whatever comes. That’s why you won’t see a letter this week questioning the policies of a company that provides housing for seniors in need of a certain level of care. It was long, detailed and for all we know could have been 100 per cent accurate.
The problem was whoever wrote it did not wish to take responsibility for his or her allegations. No name was provided. No return address or even phone number. So it won’t appear.
The same thing is probably making the rounds on social media, the great smorgasbord of unsupported and poorly expressed opinion. Good luck with that. Our impression is many (most?) people who troll the Internet for ‘news’ are looking for things that confirm what they already believe, or want to believe.
Meanwhile, if you want your opinion to appear on the Letters page of the The Leader, we’ll need a name and phone number. And if that seems too risky, consider re-stating your points in a more temperate fashion.

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