Monday, July 2, 2012

Box Full of Letters, Part III: Who's Trolling Whom?

[An Open Letter to Mike Harrington, Sabres beat writer for the Buffalo News]

Mr. Harrington:

Sooooo, I'm sure you have some other trolling to do with some other team's fan base, so I'll keep this brief.

I saw this yesterday, and couldn't help but be amused at the irony.

Now, obviously, Mr. Harrington, I don't know a thing about you personally, and all I have to go on with you professionally is what I'm sure is fine work that you do for the Buffalo News.

Oh. AND the stuff you put on Twitter under your @BNHarrington account, in which you clearly identify yourself as the SABRES BEAT WRITER for the Buffalo News.

The comment itself about the Columbus fan base isn't what offends me. We certainly get it a lot. Yeah, the Jackets are very much second fiddle to football around here... and between the University of Buffalo and the Bills, I think we can all agree the Sabres do not have that obstacle to contend with in Buffalo.

So yes, "all 17" of us hear it a lot. Quite frankly, we've learned to expect it. From random fans and the occasional blogger, anyway.

But from someone who likely calls himself a journalist? Wow. That's just ignorance.

Take one of our guys, for instance. Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch. Beat writer, good researcher and keeper of seemingly limitless Debbie Downer-esque CBJ statistics. He puts out a lot of stuff on Twitter, perhaps even more critical of the home team than he should be, and occasionally even cracks a joke or two.

Porty says many things on Twitter. However, one thing I've never seem him do is disparage any team's fan base.

Now, he doesn't take criticism very well and thus does not interact with some of the diehards here because of it. In his defense, some people are pretty tough on him.

However, because he identifies himself as the Jackets beat writer with his employer, he is a consummate professional about what he puts out there on social media.

Now, it would be all too easy to dismiss you as just some D-bag from Buffalo. However, first of all, there are a lot of cool Buffalo fans, some of whom have even made the trip here for games, and have been terrific company at (and after) games.

Second... well, I don't know you. All I really know about you is that -- in one brief moment in time -- you showed a definite lapse in professionalism.

You also showed that you don't know $#!+ about Columbus or its fans.

My only hope for you is that, barring actual Free Agency news in Buffalo, that you find a better use for your time this offseason.

Or hey, maybe you'll be in town for the All Star Star Game in January, and see what a great fan base this is, and we'll compare notes over a pint.

There's a great bar just down the way. And I'm sure "all 17" of us can squeeze you in.


Follow @MartiniHockey on Twitter....
and/or you can "Like" the blog 
on Facebook....


  1. Bravo! You did a really nice job not calling this guy an asshole like I would have done.

  2. This is why this is one of my favorite CBJ blogs. Well done, my friend. Journalists should be better than this - particularly since that is the one thing they still hold up as the difference between them and bloggers--their journalistic integrity.

  3. This is the guy who also spent yesterday trolling soccer fans, which is the Internet equivalent airline food jokes. He actually said, "And all the soccer heads come out from under their rocks to blast about a tournament no one ever heard of until this year thanks to ESPN."

    It's one thing to be a troll, quite another to be absolutely awful at it.