2014-08-14 / Opinion


Let the Words Fly

E lection season is upon us and with that comes the usual questions about what Newport This Week will and will not publish from local political candidates both for the Sept. 9 primary election and the Nov. 4 general election. We will, of course, endeavor to fairly report political news as it unfolds in the various campaigns. And, we encourage news and opinions from candidates, though they must follow certain guidelines.

The guidelines are reasonable and, we believe, fair to all candidates.

To start with, from now through Election Day in November, we will not accept letters to the editor from candidates. We will assess news releases and opinion statements from candidates for their news value in the context of the campaigns. Those that are deemed newsworthy will be treated as news–not as letters to the editor. Further, letters from non-candidates that we judge to be simple candidate endorsements or part of an orchestrated political campaign may be withheld if they contain no other news value.

Again, candidate statements will be evaluated for their news value. Those that are deemed newsworthy will be edited as appropriate. Such statements should be issue-oriented and not longer than 800 words, and be e-mailed to us at news@newportthisweek.net. We must receive them no later than noon on the Monday before Thursday publication. Besides campaign issues, political submissions may comment on opponents’ views, records or published statements.

This part is important: To ensure our impartiality, no political opinions will be published in Newport This Week as of the Sept. 4 issue, the last before the Sept. 9 primary; then again, as of the Oct. 30 issue, the last before the general election. To do otherwise would be to give one candidate an unfair advantage in our pages, without time to rebut.

Use of candidate photos in our news pages during the 2014 political campaign season will, as with candidate statements, be determined as a matter of news judgment. We will not use the same photos for both news and paid advertising. We will gladly take unique candidate photos as appropriate.

Good luck to all candidates! And, as always, contact us with any questions: Lynne Tungett, Editor, Newport This Week, 401-847-7766, extension 105, or email to news@newportthisweek.net.

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