What is Opinion Column characteristics structure and types

Opinion Column

Although it is also known as an opinion article, according to the format and the medium in which it is integrated, it is a text that is based on the author’s opinion on a specific topic , which is carefully analyzed and interpreted. expressing his position in front of him. We can often see this content in magazines or newspapers, and it is distinguished from the editorial article because it shows the signature of the person who wrote it.

It is a text that is part of journalistic texts, in turn non-literary texts and allows the author to express his point of view, which may or may not be aligned with the profile of the medium in which the story is published. opinion column. Their value is high since they seek to convince whoever reads about the subject and the way in which the opinion is expressed.

Main characteristics of an opinion column

Let’s see some distinctive features of this type of text that we can identify and that help us differentiate it from other types of text. Its main characteristics are:

Purpose of the text

In the case of opinion columns, we are talking about a text whose purpose is the presentation of an author’s point of view, based on a series of arguments focused on a particular character, entity, situation or topic. To fulfill this objective, the opinion column allows the author to have the freedom to express his point of view and lean towards the conviction of the public he is addressing.

Interesting and important topic

One of the keys to this type of text has to do with the fact that it must be an interesting topic for the public, as well as developing an entertaining structure that allows the reader to address the opinion based on ideas that have a deep investigative process and that reflect a deep knowledge about the event that is explained. This is key because the subject must transmit, at the same time, credibility and veracity to achieve its objective.

Diversity of topics

Another important feature of the opinion column is that the author can express himself on a wide variety of possible topics that have the potential to interest a large audience. In this sense, the text can talk about topics such as the economy, culture, politics, society, art, sports, education, among others.

Author insights

It is very important that when preparing an opinion column, the author has full knowledge or expertise on the subject to be developed, since his argument and point of view must be based on concrete, real ideas and with supports. solid statements that give value to the expression of their opinion. In addition to this, the importance of his knowledge and/or specialty in the area becomes one of the key requirements for its review and publication.

author identification

Unlike other types of text, especially in the journalistic field, the opinion column is one of the texts in which information about the person who develops the text is issued. In this way, when finishing the column, it must be signed with his real name and to this extent, it is also available for rebuttals or approvals by the public.

author’s style

Since whoever writes is free to express his opinion, he is also free in the way of writing and writing style. This is important because by being identified, characteristics of the author stand out in the way in which he expresses his ideas. For this reason, it is key that whoever begins to write or writes this type of text, has the possibility of building his own style, is creative and innovative to create, in some way, his own “brand” .

catchy title

An important point that is also key to capturing the reader’s attention has to do precisely with the title that is chosen for the opinion column. The author should use a striking, original title that partially introduces the reader to the topic that is going to be developed in the text. Some authors choose controversial and questionable titles to achieve this.

Audience the public

Given that the opinion column can be located in different media, as well as the topics on which it can be developed, the audience to which it is addressed can be extremely broad. This is because, furthermore, it is not necessary for the audience to be a specialist in a certain area, since the way in which the text is constructed, the reflection of the author’s knowledge, the topic that is chosen and the criticism in general, They allow the reader to locate himself relatively easily.

Use of language

The language that the author uses for his writing is of great importance, since following the breadth of the public to which it is addressed, he must look for an adequate language that is clear and that also allows the reader an easy understanding. Although, although we will see that he will be able to implement a great variety of rhetorical and literary resources, the way in which it is written, despite the complexity that some or others imply, must be precise and easily understood.

On the other hand, the author develops the text written in the first person with a much wider margin to express his ideas, even if they are in the same line or not as the medium in which it is published. It is often text that is aesthetically differentiated by the appearance of the text being used.

Structure of the opinion column

Let’s see what are the most important elements that should be considered when writing a text like these, as well as the aspects that should be developed and how to do it. This, taking into account that the scheme may vary according to the needs of the medium or format in which it is going to be disseminated.

Thesis o theme

In this first part, the author presents the topic on which he will develop his point of view. It is a space similar to an introduction in which the author provides a general context on the subject or event, in order to reach a particular context in which he exposes his ideas. Likewise, the most important ideas also appear in which it is tried to verify later, the author’s idea, so that he can resort to them in his central part.


In the central axis, the author begins with the development of the argument in which he begins to give free rein to the information he knows after contextualization. In this part he elaborates an analysis in which he begins to incorporate the ideas in a subjective tone that makes it possible to demonstrate his position in the face of the fact. In this part, as we see, it is a much freer construction in which the author defines his own structure to the extent that he exposes the ideas.


In the last part we find the conclusion of the text in which the author ends with a series of reflections or conclusions about the topic that he has raised and that allow him, at the same time, to be able to reaffirm each of the arguments that he has raised during the development. . In addition to this, this section makes clear the author’s point of view, as well as the reasons why he defends or refutes it.

Opinion Column Types

It is possible to identify some other ways in which it is possible to develop this type of text and that, in many cases, enter into dialogue with some other types of text. Let’s see what are other types of opinion column that we can find:

Opinion and literary column

This modality is mixed with aspects of the literary text, despite belonging to a category of non-literary text, especially because it is a journalistic text. However, it is possible to identify this type of texts because they have a practical objective and an aesthetic objective. In the text, the subjectivity expressed by the author is evident from a thought developed in a logical and organized way, so that the reader must interpret to understand the text, ideas or terms.

informative column

In this case, it is a type of text in which information about comments or opinions is exposed and that generate reasoning for the way in which the author approaches the content. In this way, in addition to expressing his opinion, the information is also presented in a summarized manner to publicize the most relevant events or, to divide the topic that is also of interest to the reader.

literary column

It is a type of text in which the author explains his arguments or ideas based on concepts and an aesthetic sense. It is one of the most complex texts, particularly for the reader, since a series of values ​​and resources of literature are introduced that increase the level of demand for the reader’s understanding, as well as for the interpretation of the ideas that the author has explained.

humor column

As its name indicates, it is a type of column in which the author, following the intention of showing his position in front of a fact, is also the axis of generating humor from a sense of entertainment and fun for the public to whom it is directed. There are also various topics that can be addressed, although it is distinguished because an ironic language is marked in it in which the author can mock and criticize events of daily life, or important personalities or figures who are popularly known.

comment column

This type of opinion column constitutes precisely a comment that is developed by the author in which he also shares information related to unknown details about the facts, events or the particular topic, so that you can build your own comment with a communicative nuance in which also reveals his position. In addition to this, it is a comment that can also be ironic, humorous, critical or analytical if preferred.

critical column

The critical column, also known as a review column, stands out because in it the author is in charge of exposing a series of topics that imply a mastery and knowledge of the author, given the need for argumentation and the search for conviction. It often includes specific topics of general interest from fields such as society, art, among others.

personalities column

It is a type of column in which the author exposes his point of view or opinion in relation to different figures or personalities of social life that become a current issue at the moment in which it develops due to some particularity that allows them to stand out. . In this sense, the author can decide to generate his column in relation to personalities such as writers, politicians, artists, musicians, actors, among others, who are a focal point for the public.

Guidelines for writing an opinion column

After knowing the most important aspects of this type of journalistic texts, we move on to a fundamental point and that is the elaboration of a text like this. For this we have gathered a series of elements that must be taken into account to write an opinion column and that cannot be missing in the process, these are:

theme selection

Preparing a text like this implies thinking about the reader, the medium in which it is going to be published, and the interests and/or needs of the writer. For this reason, the selection of the topic is a fundamental step in writing. It is recommended to choose an interesting topic, which can capture the attention of a large number of readers. Experts believe that the best way to do this is by studying cases or current issues with which readers may be familiar.

However, it is necessary to mention that the freedom to choose the topic is also one of the main characteristics of the opinion column, which is why, if the journalist prefers, they can choose to create a column with a novel topic that is capable of generate interest and curiosity.

Preparation of the information

Before starting the writing process, it is very important that the author is in charge of collecting and preparing all the information on which he will base his opinion column. The construction of a visual organizer is recommended that includes all the necessary information in each part of the writing where the author can rely on to follow the structure or approach that he wants to use for the column.

It is important to take care that each of the ideas or argumentative parts is consistent with the information collected, while following a connection between the parts that facilitates the written journey and, at the same time, the reading process of the target audience.

writing planning

Although there is a general structure that the author can take to put his content, it is necessary that he choose how he will use this framework or in a particular way, how he will present his ideas. This, because the arguments are usually the starting point of the opinion column, so that little by little the author’s thesis or central idea will appear as each of the points is developed. Do not forget to announce the statement of the problem.

Reinforcement of the argument

One of the keys of the opinion column is the argument through which, in addition, the reader is persuaded, which is why the presentation of ideas in the argumentative process must be based on solid aspects and evidence that strengthen each of the opinions. presentations in a way that reinforces each of the arguments. For this, it is necessary for the author to provide figures, data, evidence and all kinds of elements that allow him to confirm the analysis that he carries out throughout his text.

Reader familiarity

Another fundamental point of the opinion column is related to the familiar tone that it manages with the reader, so that the communication with him, or at least in the first part his information, arrives in a better way. That is why it is recommended that the author manage in his writing an intimate and close tone with the readers that can generate empathy and with it, credibility of the information he presents.

That is, writing as if you were speaking in front of an acquaintance or friend, which contributes to the explanation of the subject, the argumentation, and the connection between the ideas of the fact and the assessments of the writer.

Reaffirmation of the posture

To finish writing the opinion column, it is recommended that the text close by reaffirming the position that the author argued throughout the writing. That is to say, it must be written very well and make it clear what is the position that the author takes regarding the topic developed, preferably in a few words. To achieve this, it is necessary to take a look at the content and connect the subsequent analysis in a way that fits the evaluation. This allows the approach that has been established to develop naturally before the reader’s gaze, generating a connection with what has been said and, to this extent, the persuasion that this type of text seeks.

Review Opinion Column

The revision of the text is a step that we cannot forget or omit, since in the first place it will allow us to identify misspellings and writing, as well as possible errors in the cohesion and approach of the ideas, which could diminish the quality and veracity of our written. That is why the review must be done with an objective and in-depth look that facilitates the detection of any type of weakness in order to modify and correct it.

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