On Monday, The Huffington Post removed an article written as part of a paid campaign to scrub Seattle City Light Chief Executive Jorge Carrasco’s online image, according to a Politics Northwest blog post. Seattle Times reporter Jim Brunner wrote about the effort, which City Light paid for, in a Sunday news story.
The Seattle Times opinion section publishes guest columns, aka op-eds, that are written by community members. You’ll spot them by the “Special to the Times” under their bylines.
These opinion columns help build a forum for respectful, civil debate about the local issues of the day. (For more about submitting op-eds, check out The Seattle Times’ op-ed guidelines.)
How does the opinion section handle financial interests? Before The Seattle Times publishes a guest opinion column, our editors explicitly ask writers through a written form whether they have a financial interest in the outcome of their arguments. If a writer does have a financial interest, he or she is expected to disclose it and our editors have a discussion with the writer. If we decide to move forward with publication, we figure out a way to be transparent with readers about the financial interest.More