What makes this page different from the rest of the News?

Simple: We edit it, but you write (most of) it.

Guest columns, letters to the editor — as we’ve pointed out in this space earlier in this year, most of the content on this page every day is contributed by individuals who are not staff members of the News.

Though the News may be this campus’s version of the mainstream media, producing this paper is a collaborative effort, and the editorial page in particular strives to reflect the manifold voices of the Yale students, faculty, staff and alumni, and the New Haven community members, whom this paper serves. Though the content on this page is edited, in selecting and editing columns and letters, the goal is always to reflect the diversity of views harbored in this campus.

But in order to publish a representative sample of campus and community views, we need a representative sample of you to contribute your work and let us know your thoughts. So we’re taking this moment to explain our policies on guest columns and letters in order to make it easier for would-be writers (i.e., you) to communicate with us.

The News welcomes all submissions of letters to the editor and guest columns. Most letters that we publish are direct responses to an article or column that appeared in the News, and we print letters both in favor and against previously published pieces. If anything, we are more likely to pick a letter that disagrees with our prior coverage in order to bring a new voice into the debate. Letters should run no more than 300 words and should be e-mailed to opinion@yaledailynews.com. Make sure to include your full name, an evening phone number and your affiliation (if any) with Yale.

Unlike letters, opinion columns should raise new topics for conversation. The range of topics we publish is as broad as the range of Yalies’ interests — obviously, many writers discuss politics, but we also publish columns about public health, Yale policy, and religious, gender and racial issues on campus and off. In general, we prefer columns about issues that pertain to Yale or New Haven, and we’re always looking for columns from writers who have never contributed to the News before. Don’t worry if you’re not an English major or have never written a column before; we can help you edit you work and refine your argument.

If you want to write a column, or think you might want to write a column, contact our editorials editor at opinion@yaledailynews.com. Columns should run at most 800 words and must be previously unpublished. When submitting a column, please include your full name, Yale affiliation and an evening phone number. And while this is primarily an undergraduate publication, we welcome submissions from graduate students, professional students, faculty members, staff, alumni and members of the New Haven community.

It’s that simple. So speak up.