Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

Letters to the Editor (LTE) draw readership but newspapers are reducing their space. Akron Beacon Journal now only publishes once-a-week LTEs on a guest Op/Ed page. Hudson Hub Times as the last Record Courier newspaper, publishes minimally relevant local news and community information with LTEs eliminated. ABJ provides minimal news coverage for Summit County communities and eschews local issue LTEs.

News Leaders Association (previously American Society of News Editors) along with the Society of Professional Journalists promote annual Sunshine Week celebrating Open Government. One recommended activity: Letters to the Editor. Executive Editor Ron Judd of the Cascadia Daily News, Bellingham, Washington, writes, “The definitely not-last-word on letters”(May 24, 2023), about the troubling trend to reduce LTE space in newspapers. He says more is better, bring it on. Discourse through free speech is basic civic engagement, made better with civility and facts. Editorial oversight exercises discretion over content.

Hudson is in a local news desert and a loss of LTEs. Blogs, Facebook, community social media sites and city e-news have backfilled the vacancy with less accountable opinionated sources to frame debate. These sites are vulnerable to spin, bias, disinformation, misinformation and defamation.

Our current Hudson City Council is the most litigious in our history with escalating legal costs. Citizen engagement is paramount to address issues under Hudson’s Chartered Home Rule. Hudson Life offers good coverage and limited LTE. But what source can offer more timely, in depth journalistic coverage and LTEs that are conspicuously absent but seriously needed? ∞

Pat Simons

Oxford Road