Opening Statement: Tell us what you think

Opening Statement

Marc Karlinsky

Interim Editor

November 2015

Every month when the latest issue of this magazine leaves 415 North State, I like to think we’re sprouting up conversations across the city in law firm reception areas, judges’ chambers and at happy hours.

And when I get the chance to meet with readers outside the office, I always appreciate hearing what they have to say about what we do here. It makes this job more meaningful, more effective and more fun — and it helps keeps me accountable, too.

But it’s not enough for your takes on Chicago Lawyer content to end with our reporters and editors as feedback. In many cases, readers’ opinions can shed some light into the ongoing conversation for the rest of us — and I’d like to start sharing your ideas on a regular basis.

One page over, you’ll find a letter submitted by a reader in response to a story that ran in our September issue on property tax assessments. It’s an element I hope we can include in upcoming issues to make Chicago Lawyer a more conversational space that doesn’t just start the conversation, but engages with it as it develops.

Here are the general guidelines to submit a letter to the editor:

  • You should send your notes to editor@ lbpc.com. Make sure they include your full name, your title, your firm and where you’re based. We won’t publish anonymous submissions or allow authors to use pseudonyms. While Chicago or Illinois-based lawyers are preferred, we’re open to any submission that has a local context.
  • Your comments should be addressed to me, the editor — not as an open letter to the vast Chicago Lawyer-reading public or to specific individuals.
  • Please keep your submission under 300 words so that we have space to share as many viewpoints as possible each month. If you have more to say than 300 words, feel free to send it — but understand we will likely cut it down for space.
  • We’ll give preference to letters that directly address an item published recently in the magazine — whether it’s an article, column, survey, infographic or even a photograph. Make sure to cite the article title and issue date you’re referencing. If it’s a topic that’s relevant and interesting to readership but one we haven’t touched upon lately, that’s great too.
  • Submissions to Chicago Lawyer must be exclusive to Chicago Lawyer — not submitted to be published in another print publication or on any other website. We’ll give you a heads-up within about 14 days of receiving it whether or not we plan to run your letter. If we don’t choose to run it, you’re free to submit it elsewhere.
  • We expect you to disclose any relevant professional, transactional, commercial, financial, litigation-related or political affiliations or interests you have in the topic you address.
  • As much as we’d love to, we can’t publish every letter we receive. What runs is the sole discretion of our editors. Though we try to let your words shine on their own, we reserve the right to revise submissions for things like clarity and relevance.

To those readers who’ve already provided us with feedback, thanks — keep it coming. And to those who haven’t chimed in yet, I’m looking forward to hearing what you’ve got to say.