Become a verified commenter

The Virginian-Pilot Opinion pages provide a vigorous forum –- in print and online -– for readers to discuss and debate.

For years, we've required letters to the editor to include the author's name and hometown. Until now, we haven't held online commenters to the same standard. As many readers have noted, that anonymity sometimes has lowered the quality of conversation online.

That has changed. Commenters on Pilot Opinion pieces –- letters, columns, editorials -- are now required to sign their names, just as they would in the newspaper.

At this time, your verified name will only be attached to comments posted in the Opinion section and on a few select news articles (on sensitive issues or pending crime cases) that are clearly marked as verified only. You can still post anonymously on most news stories if you wish.

But that's not all that has changed in the Opinion channel. "Verified users" will have their comments posted automatically, which is not always the case for anonymous posters. We also regularly include some of the sharpest comments in the newspaper.

We've tried to make this process as simple as possible. We've also made it free.

Please log into the site or create a new account using one of the links below, then return to this page after you've logged in to begin the verification process.

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