Editorial: An editorial doesn’t represent the entire newsroom


The ISD Editorial Board explains how the opinion desk is separate from the rest of the newsroom. The editorials written by the Board might not represent the views of others.

Editorial Board

Have you ever been in a newsroom? If you haven’t, the demographic looks a little like this (or at least ours does): news desk, politics desk, diversity desk, photography desk, design desk, copy desk, opinion desk and so much more. Each desk owns its own voice, and they are, more often than not, not the same.

But there’s a difference between the opinion desk and the rest of the editorial team. Our news desks and sports desks report the facts of the news and what is going on around campus. The opinion section also uses facts but uses them to publish columns and editorials to pack up an individual’s argument.

But where columns and editorials differ is who it represents. When a reporter or editor writes a column, that represents their own opinion and why they feel that way. An editorial represents the thoughts of a group called the ISD Editorial Board. In today’s news climate, it can be confusing to understand all the moving parts sometimes, but when it comes to the opinion desk, it’s very important to understand this:

An editorial does not represent the entire newsroom. 

The opinion desk writes the editorial, which is a smaller fraction of the newsroom. An editorial outlines a consensus of a smaller group of people within the newsroom, who constitute the Editorial Board, decide upon. There are Iowa State students who don’t work at the Daily on the Board as well, and if you have any interest in joining this board and getting your voice heard, anyone is eligible to apply

Editorials are different than columns, and those are different than letters or guest columns. We previously wrote an editorial explaining more in depth how the opinion desk works, so feel free to check out that article for more explanation and information about opinion writing and media literacy.

When you are at an editorial board meeting, you probably won’t agree with someone else on the board. In fact, it is more than likely you will disagree. It’s encouraged. This discourse requires people to provide proper evidence for their arguments and strengthen the depth of our discussions and articles. However, the editorial board attempts to derive a best-possible-solution scenario based on the prompt or problem given. The beauty of the newsroom lies with the diversity of people within it who take interest in various topics to various degrees. We all specialize in something and have different opinions, which is the whole reason the Editorial Board was created. 

We try to compromise and come to an angle on an issue that at least all of us can agree with or understand at some level. This may mean one of us may be writing an editorial we don’t 100 percent agree with, but if it’s the majority opinion and we can add our own thoughts to it as well, that is what we write. 

An editorial is an opinion of many but a valuable one because of its emphasis on consensus. We choose topics based on importance, campus climate or something worth discussion. If you have an idea that you think would be an interesting topic to write about, feel free to email our editor-in-chief at [email protected].