The Corboy Case

Re “Did Corboy & Demetrio Blow It?” by James L. Merriner, December 4

I don’t know which is worst, that the law firm blew the case or that the law firm and judges are simply waiting for Millie [Pinnick] to pass away in hopes of washing their hands of the lawsuit against Corb&Dem. I say the latter. Come the next election I’ll be sure to watch for those names and not throw my vote away.

Ms. Payton

The author appears to have the cooperation of the plaintiff. The attorney-client privilege belongs to the client, not the lawyer. If she wants you to see the records, they should not be turning them over redacted, with passages blotted out.

Corboy & Demetrio is a great firm that has helped a lot of people. But they dropped the ball here and they surely know it. It is obvious to anyone working in law that job one was to preserve that evidence. I’m disappointed they don’t have the class to settle with the lady. They surely know they are in the wrong. If these judges are interpreting the letter of the law, they certainly are not the spirit of it, and they too know that the firm is in the wrong.

What a sad, sickening story all the way around.


Corboy & Demetrio is an amazing law firm who has done nothing but good for this city and the citizens. And the fact that they are being scrutinized for making mistakes that people can make every day really makes me sick. People donate money to high-ranking city officials everyday. How is that a crime? And by the way the firm’s office is not a grand ballroom. It’s just like any other prestigious law firm in Chicago.


I can’t help but shake my head when I read a story like this. This family put their trust in this prestigious law firm to handle this case the way it should have been handled. Instead of getting closure and peace of mind, they get more grief and heartache. My thoughts and prayers go out to this family. They have suffered enough, I hope the wheels of justice prevail in favor of the Pinnicks on this one!


There is an enormous irony in this story. The Pinnick family went to Corboy’s firm because of its reputation and past successes. I am sure many hundreds of people have sought the firm’s services because—in addition to the abilities of its attorneys—of that long list of million-dollar-plus recoveries. And the Pinnick family had hoped—no, it probably expected—to take advantage of those successes, ties, and connections to secure a large settlement or verdict. It had hoped that by retaining Corboy’s firm it would get the breaks, the extensions, and the rulings before or at trial to secure a better recovery. If things had been different and the vehicle was preserved, had Corboy’s firm sued every deep pocket and obtained a $50 million verdict at trial, the Pinnick estate would probably be defending an appeal from one or more of the defendants, and asking those same appellate judges and possibly the High Court Justices to affirm the verdict.

Attorney in Chicago

What’s Wrong With WBEZ

Re: “Layoffs at WBEZ, Vocalo” by Michael Miner, News Bites blog, December 5, which is followed by an enormous stream of reader comments.

What Malatia is refraining from mentioning is that WBEZ’s largest listening audience is 18-34 years old. Which completely neutralizes his defense of Vocalo.


Whenever ‘BEZ pops up in the news everyone gravitates to the “Vocalo is killing the station” and “They should have never gotten rid of music” arguments. There are other reasons that ‘BEZ is in trouble that have nothing to do with either of those things.

1. Their pledge drives are horrible. Their model resembles the U.S. approach to the Vietnam War: browbeat the listener with incessant chatter until people call. Other stations only pledge for two minutes at a time, only four times per hour, and those stations tend to do better with fund-raising.

2. Their local news department is terrible.

3. They need more—and more relevant—local programming.


Malatia correctly recognized that the old format had a loyal but dwindling audience. The reasons for that decline include changing tastes and the Internet, where you can hear jazz and blues 24/7 to your heart’s content free of charge. A DJ sitting in front of a microphone spinning old records and CDs all night is no longer a viable concept. Only Dick Buckley and Nile Frantz could make that kind of a program compelling.

WBEZ could support the local music scene by taping and airing shows from clubs around the city like the Velvet Lounge and the new Jazz Showcase. It would cost almost nothing to produce (I bet technicians would volunteer), would not require much equipment, and the club operators and musicians would love the exposure. It would give WBEZ proprietary property they could license and sell. It would be more fun to listen to than old Coltrane or Thundering Herd records (sorry about that) and be more appealing to the 18-34 demographic. This can also be done with other genres and venues like the Old Town School.


Some great people were laid off on Friday... people with years of institutional knowledge and great ideas for moving public radio forward. Malatia is an idiot. He has visions for Vocalo that aren’t even shared with the staff. Most of the Vocalo staff was surprised to find out that even after the new tower went up, most of Chicago can’t even tune in to listen.

The money spent on Vocalo is criminal, given the number of listeners and visitors to its Web site. I receive more visitors to my blog, and that only costs me about $5/month to maintain.


The house is on fire but there is an arsonist. All board meetings are for the public to attend and everyone should [be] at the next one. They have to be posted on the Web site. More than $2 million spent on Vocalo annually with a radio signal that doesn’t [reach] north of the river.


Shame on You, CPC Board

Re “Cropped Out: The board of the Chicago Photography Center fires founder Richard Stromberg” by Deanna Isaacs, November 27

This is the saddest situation and a travesty to a gifted and inspirational community leader. I was one of the early contributors to CPC, and it was Richard’s passion for photography and philosophy for community that drew me in. He cultivated my photographic eye, supported my early efforts, and helped me grow. If he stands firm on principles, it is because of his moral commitment to both community and to ensuring that photography remains an combination of art and journalism. Richard’s unbelievable energy was the source of the CPC community and the center itself. It literally could not have happened without him. Shame on you, CPC board, for your failure to deal respectfully with someone who gave so much to you.

Terry Hush

Editor’s note: Many comments posted after this story online were eliminated by readers who flagged them as inappropriate, triggering programmed deletion. Some of those comments were posted under the names of people who posted later comments to say their identities had been hijacked.