Buffalo News Pwn3d by Commenters

29 Jun

The Mayor of the City of Buffalo appointed interim Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda to the post permanently. The Buffalo News’ article reporting that fact is quite odd, to put it mildly.

On a whim, I checked out the comments to the article. What I found there, posted by anonyms who were free to write without fear of retaliation by City Hall or Police HQ, was information that directly contradicted the news transcribed in the Buffalo News from city press releases and provided by the Mayor’s office.

Derenda, 50, an East Side resident and 24-year veteran of the force, declined to comment, though he was seen headed into meetings with Mayor Byron W. Brown at City Hall this morning. The position of top cop pays $116,989 a year.

More specifically,

Derenda and his wife and their two young children reside in Buffalo’s Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood, where he grew up. In past interviews, Derenda said it was always his goal to join the police department.

But anonymous commenter “ProperEnglish” posted this:

Dear Ms. Sullivan,

Seeing as though you and your minions at the Snooze refuse to do any investigative reporting and continue to print blatant propaganda from Brown, Casey, Cutler and the likes, I took it upon myself to do a simple search of public records.

Dan Derenda and his wife currently reside in Clarence, and have for several years. Correct me if I’m wrong but, when he was Deputy Police Commissioner he was supposed to be under the rule that states he was SUPPOSED to live in the City, right?

He claims an address on Pierce street in Buffalo. However, if you or your fine reporters had done ANY sort of homework, you would have realized that this is a fraud! The particular piece of property that he and his wife own on Pierce street is legally deemed a paper street. I don’t know of anyone who resides on a “paper street”.

My next post will have my references, so don’t delete this post as uninformed hearsay!

Sure enough, ProperEnglish in the very next comment reveals that Derenda has resided in Clarence Center since about 2006, according to the County Clerk’s records, and his phone number is listed there.

Another anonymous commenter, who might not want his or her real identity known says:

lou michel and brian meyer have absolutley lost all credibility, printing this propaganda should be criminal: failure to recognize his lack of rank, failure to explore his business ties with the brown bandwagon, a failure to investigate his real residence and a failure to explore his real “work ethic” by running his company on city time, makes this article a total fluff piece, as if we will fall for it. figures the only cop to talk about derenda on the record is diina, those two and the word dedication in the same sentence is actually funny. diina will have to give up his trophy for the most hated commissioner, now that his buddy derenda is working his 3 hrs a day, 7 day a week work schedule…

Maybe it’s not just the racist BS that prompted the News to get rid of anonymous commenting in the coming weeks. Maybe it’s also the fact that it can be pretty brutally pwn3d by its readers within a few hours of the article’s appearance.

And here’s what Artvoice wrote about Derenda’s chances of becoming Commissioner a full month and a half ago:

Derenda a “Shoe-In”

That’s how a policeman friend of ours described Daniel Derenda’s prospects for being named Buffalo’s next police commissioner. Derenda has been interim commissioners since Mayor Byron Brown unceremoniously fired H. McCarthy Gipson at the end of last year. The mayor promised that there would be a national search for Gipson’s replacement, but lately some members of the Common Council have complained that there’s been no earnest effort to find any other candidate than Derenda.

You may recall reading something about the matter in this column in the first issue of 2010: “The number one candidate is Deputy Commissioner Dan Derenda, who reportedly has the support of Deputy Mayor Steve Casey,” we reported. We suggested then that the Brown administration worried that the Common Council majority might hesitate to confirm the selection. In addition to kneejerk reaction to Casey’s support, the Council might balk because Derenda’s primary residence is apparently in Clarence and he lacks. A delay in appointing him would give him time to sort that out.

Derenda has donated $2,200 to Brown’s campaign coffers since 2006, and his apparel company, First Impressions, donated $696 in goods to the mayor’s re-election campaign. First Impressions has provided campaign support to numerous candidates Brown has sponsored in recent years, including Barbra Kavanaugh, Antoine Thompson, Jessica Maglietto, and Craig Hannah.

I’m sure Derenda’s tenure as Commissioner will be neither more nor less distinguished than that of his predecessors. But at the very least, one would hope that the local paper would do more than simply offer Peter Cutler transcription services.

5 Responses to “Buffalo News Pwn3d by Commenters”

  1. Tom Dolina June 29, 2010 at 9:48 pm #

    Wow. Perhaps if they combined the classifieds with the comments section, you could pay to post comments anonymously, thus giving the newspaper another revenue stream in today’s online world. And perhaps even then some actual reporting might be seen at least on the online version of the News.

  2. Jesse June 30, 2010 at 12:01 am #

    Actually, the deed for the Clarence property is recording a sale FROM the Derendas to Meridian Development. He may well not live in the city, and for sure the News frequently gets its facts wrong, but this is pretty poor “pwnage” by anonymous commenters.

    Derenda does in fact own property on Dover Street in the Broadway-Fillmore neighborhood, but looking at it on Google Street View it doesn’t seem like the kind of house someone making $110,000 would live in. The land (I believe it is vacant) he owns on Pierce is in Kaisertown, and I don’t think that’s the house they’re referring to in the article.

  3. Ward June 30, 2010 at 9:08 am #

    Looking behind the disgruntled PBA griping, one is moderately surprised that Mr Brown appointed a white person Commissioner.


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