A Letter From The Publisher, Aug. 26, 1974

A great many Americans feel that the press (among many other institutions) fails to listen to them attentively, and fails to give them a chance to speak up or talk back. This week we introduce two features in response—or at least partial response—to this sentiment. One is Forum, a revamped Letters section, open to comment from readers, prominent and otherwise. The second is Soundings, a scientific polling of opinions and trends in American society.

In a typical week nowadays we get 1,300 letters. Since the spring of 1973, Watergate has inspired 40,000 pieces of...

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