Excerpts from reader commentary on News stories and staffers' online blog postings last week. Online comments come from registered users, but comments to the blogs can be posted under pen names.

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Buffalo Sabres: News sports reporter Mike Harrington's piece on the pricey Ville Leino garnered a lot of response, including this from Dave Wassink of Fredericksburg:

This team has no confidence and appears to have quit. Say goodbye to any thoughts of playoffs this year because they don't have the mental attitude to make the push. A fresh start is needed for this team. Even with a coaching change, the time needed to turn this Titanic around would take more than we have left in the season.

Maybe they will surprise and start playing to their abilities but I don't see things changing this year. Time to start thinking about how to make a serious run next year.

Monte Davis of Kissimmee, Fla., added:

How much more do the Sabres fans have to endure before something is done? This is getting to be laughable, and as a die-hard Sabres fan I am very disappointed. I have never seen a Sabres season unravel quite like this one has.

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Online Piracy: In response to an editorial on the Stop Online Piracy Act in the House and its companion bill in the Senate, the Protect Intellectual Property Act, Rick Bridenbaker of West Seneca added:

As a provider of 3D digital content, I lose a lot of money myself due to the illegal downloading of my products. Nevertheless, when prompted by the various sites (where I broker my products) to offer my support to these bills, I have to instead raise concerns about their unintended consequences.

We have to be very wary of bills like this and make certain that their wording is subject to the most stringent of specifications. All consequences, both intended and unintended, must be very carefully weighed. This is the kind of thing that government likes to piggyback its own agendas on while in the process of "protecting" us. People need to be aware and concerned about the Big Brother-like apparatus the government has been building to keep us "safe" from various threats.

This isn't an aluminum-foil hat conspiracy-theory rant either. While it's bad to suffer the loss of revenues from illegally downloaded digital content, it would be much worse to suffer the loss of freedom by giving any governmental agency so much control over the last bastion of free speech left for the peoples of the world. That governments have been trying to gain (maintain) control over the Internet is no secret.

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E-books: News staff reporter Charity Vogel's story, "Era of e-books has arrived," generated several responses, including this from Philip James Jarosz of Buffalo:

I'm old fashioned. I love books you don't have to plug into a wall to recharge. I love books that are signed by the author at local bookstores. Yes, the new e-books are space savers, but if the power goes out, you can't recharge your Kindle. Will they ever have a huge e-book to replace my art books or coffee table books? I doubt it. At least I know when I die, my paper books, like me, will turn into dust, while an e-book will lie in some dump site contaminating the land. See you at the next book sale.

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Beating the odds: Following a touching Associated Press story on Brentwood High School senior Samantha Garvey making it to the semi-finals of the prestigious national Intel science competition -- despite being homeless -- Helen Bilowus of Lackawanna wrote:

This is the kind of news I like to read. Congratulations on your scholastic achievements, Samantha. I wish the best of everything for you and your family.

Raymond Beitz of Lisle added:

Right on. This is the type of news people need to see more of. It is nice to finally see an article with a positive slant, where a person and family that went through the mill finally get something that looks like a reward for their hard work and determination of trying to better themselves.