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Dutch Court Rules That Linking Is Legal In Scientology Case

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the very-kind-of-them dept.

The Courts 386

touretzky writes "The Court of Appeal in The Hague today rejected all of Scientology's claims in appeal in Scientology's action against XS4ALL, Karin Spaink and ten other internet providers. As a result, Karin Spaink's website, which Scientology sought to remove from the Internet based on copyright claims, is entirely legal in the Netherlands. The court also overturned two lower court rulings, one of which said that linking to material that infringed a copyright was itself actionable. The other ruling said that ISPs that failed to act on credible notification of a copyright violation could be held liable for that. The Appeals Court felt that this was too vague a standard, and thus posed a threat to free speech. More info at ScientologyWatch.org."

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GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897376)

GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO
By Tim Copperfield
New York, NY - GNAA (Gay Nigger Association of America) today announced acquisition of The SCO Group [yahoo.com] for $26.9 million in stock and $40 million in gay niggers.

GNAA today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the intellectual property and technology assets of The SCO Group, a leading provider of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt, based in Lindon, Utah. GNAA's acquisition of SCO technology will help GNAA sign up more members worldwide. In addition to developing new solutions, GNAA will use SCO engineering expertise and technology to enhance the GNAA member services.

"I'd love to see these GNAA types slowly consumed by millions of swarming microbes and converted into harmless and useful biochemicals." said an anonymous slashdot poster, blinded by the GNAA success in achieving first post on a popular geek news website, slashdot.org [slashdot.org] .

"This GNAA shit is getting out of hand. Slashdot needs troll filters. Or better yet a crap flood mod that I can exclude from my browsing. Seriously, a good troll is art, what you dumb fucks are doing is just plain stupid." said spacecowboy420.

macewan, on linuxquestions [linuxquestions.org] said "Thanks for that link to the SCO quotes page. My guess is that they want to be bought out. Hrm, think they want GNAA to buy them??"

After careful consideration and debate, GNAA board of directors agreed to purchase 6,426,600 preferred shares and 113,102 common shares (the equivalent of 150,803 ADSs) of SCO, for an aggregate consideration of approximately US$26.9 million and approximately $40 million for gay niggers that were working in Lindon, Utah offices of The SCO Group.

If all goes well, the final decision is to be expected shortly, followed by transfer of most SCO niggers from their Lindon, UT offices to the GNAA Headquarters in New York.

About GNAA
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which
gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

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If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is EFNet, and you can connect to irc.secsup.org or irc.isprime.com as one of the EFNet servers.
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About SCO
The SCO Group [SCOX [yahoo.com] ] helps millions of gay niggers in more than 82 countries around the world grow their penises everyday. Headquartered in Lindon, Utah, SCO has a network of more than 11,000 nigger resellers and 8,000 developers. SCO Global Services provides reliable nigger support and services to prospective members and customers.
SCO and the associated SCO logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of The SCO Group, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. UNIX and UnixWare are registered trademarks of The Open Group in the United States and other countries. All other brand or product names are or may be trademarks of their respective owners.

This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management's current expectations and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may vary materially from the expectations contained herein. The forward-looking statements contained herein include statements about the consummation of the transaction with SCO and benefits of the pending transaction with SCO. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described herein include the inability to obtain regulatory approvals and the inability to successfully integrate the SCO business. GNAA is under no obligation to (and expressly disclaims any such obligation to) update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

________________________________________________
| ______________________________________._a,____ |
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ |
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ |
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ |
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ |
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ |
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ |
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ |
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ |
| ______-"!^____________________________________ |
` _______________________________________________'

Re:GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897411)

Wow, thats the first time I've seen someone mod a GNAA post 'Interesting'. I wonder what interests this person in it?

All religion (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897382)

is a mind yolk for the ignorant and easily influenced. Scientology is scary even compared to the rest of those nut jobs.

2nd post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897385)

suckers!

Re:2nd post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897399)

YOU FAIL IT!!!

A bad decision (1, Interesting)

egg troll (515396) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897389)

I'll be the first to say that Scientology is evil. However, I'm distressed by this court's decision. For example, if I were to post an entire album by $BAND along with a critique, everyone would agree that this was copyright infringement.


Of course, this is Slashdot where all copyrights are bad, so I expect this post to drown in a sea of downmods. Still, I feel that I need to point out that this decision doesn't sit well with me.

Re:A bad decision (5, Interesting)

Nels (325798) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897408)

What makes you extend this to posting an entire album? What about fair use? Simply because the website posted portions of copyrighted material doesn't mean it's illegal. Also, another important thing is parody. I'm not familiar with the website, but if it could in any way be construed as a parody, it would be completely legit.
We aren't against all copyrights (most of us anyways). We just don't like it when copyright owners try to make us use their information exactly as they wish and not to critique it with excerpts.

No you are wrong.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897409)

Violating Andover/VALinux or whatever named they go by now is also wrong. I can't remember fully, but there was that time when a copyright was violated here and they took legal action. Correct me if I am wrong, I can't recall the exact details.

Re:A bad decision (4, Informative)

serps (517783) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897412)

However, I'm distressed by this court's decision. For example, if I were to post an entire album by $BAND along with a critique, everyone would agree that this was copyright infringement.

Everyone does (assuming you don't have permission from $BAND). However, the court upheld the right to post links to other sites, which is not the same thing.

Re:A bad decision (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897436)

In response to your sig, I feel that claims of racism are thrown around way too freely today. For example, I've had people label me a racist because I oppose affirmative action. If you don't know, affirmative action gives preferential treatment to minorities instead of treating everyone equally. That is discrimination, too, even though it's not done against a minority. When people use the term racism as freely as they do, it's only natural to be defensive about it, because in a world where it's just not cool to be a racist, nobody wants to be labeled a racist. Even if they're not actually a racist.

Re:A bad decision (-1, Offtopic)

D+iz+a+n+k+Meister (609493) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897627)

School must be in. Some segregated fees issues brewing?

Racism, unlike WMD, is a very specific thing, and it has nothing to do with eliminating relatively unfair discrimination. Racism is about systematic attempts to deprive a particular race of people positions of power in society.

Since you have no idea what racism means, and then redefine racism so that you're not actually a racist, you are ignorant, and so you probably are a racist.

Re:A bad decision (5, Interesting)

kevinz (591587) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897435)

I've got one modpoint left, so I could mod you down, but that would prevent me from asking if you even read the slashdot article, much less the linked article. Besides, it'll happen anyway.

Based on what the article says, what you are really saying is that if you posted a review of $BAND with a link to the illegal posting of the entire album that your ISP should be held liable for copywrite infringement. That argument doesn't wash with me; the ISP should be considered a common carrier and nothing more.

This has nothing to do with Scientology and everything to do with protecting those entities that provide access to content providers. The fact that some copywrite holders (RIAA, Sceintology, etc) think that it is easier and cheaper to attach the bandwith provider than it is to attach the content providers does not make such actions justified. This is a good decision that should be mirrored in the US. I've got my fingers crossed....

Re:A bad decision (-1, Flamebait)

cozman69 (679437) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897441)

You must be a retard, because you obviously don't have simple comprehension skills. The case was about LINKING to copyrighted material, not actually hosting it on the internet. RTFA, dumbass.

Not all copyrights are bad. (2, Insightful)

Population (687281) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897443)

Copyright is fine. Just as long as it will expire in a reasonable amount of time (20 years).

Patents are okay, too. As long as they aren't for software or "business methods".

Expiration concepts (2, Interesting)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897596)

The trouble that I've noticed with copyright is that it doesn't deal well when something becomes part of mass-culture. Someone or some group creates something that becomes intrinsic in society, yet even after the novelty has worn off, they continue to maintain an iron grip on it. They won't release it to the benefit of society. Disney, the RIAA, the MPAA, and the like are all involved in this. Hell, half of the old TV shows made after '68 are unknown to younger generations. How many kids under the age of fifteen have seen "Scarecrow and Mrs. King", or "Laverne and Shirley", or "Taxi"? Some of the programs that were popular even as little as 20 years ago, ones that made a large impact on popular culture, are not really found anymore, while TV shows before that (which were subject to differing copyright and public domain rules), like "Star Trek", "Lost in Space", "The Andy Griffith Show", and such are still entertaining people today.

New culture can be cool. I've found groups like Space Hog, Chris Isaac, and Love and Rockets to be very entertaining and very talented, but I've also found a wealth of very good music and media from the past, and it doesn't see the light of day anymore unless it was top-40 back in it's heyday. That's just sad.

Re:A bad decision (3, Funny)

eht (8912) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897450)

You haven't been here long enough...

All copyrights are bad except things copyrighted by the GPL.

Re:A bad decision (1, Offtopic)

child_of_mercy (168861) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897510)

GPL is a defensive copyright.

if we abolished all copyright (and patents) completely then we wouldn't need GPL.

Therefore it is not inconsistent to be against copyright and for GPL copyleft.

Re:A bad decision (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897525)

Ok, let me strap myself in for this one.

Please explain what would stop someone from taking a GPLd work, sticking their name on it, compiling it, claiming it was there own and selling it if there where no copyrights?

Re:A bad decision (1)

child_of_mercy (168861) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897542)

nothing.

nothing to stop you compiling and selling a GPL'd work right now.

Right now you can't claim ownership and stop other people redistributing it (for free or by sale).

If there were no copyright you wouldn't have to worry about that.

Re:A bad decision (3, Informative)

Kenja (541830) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897561)

Sure there is, the GPL. Which is backed up by copyright laws. It would be illigal for me to claim open source work as my own if I did not in fact create it. You get rid of copyright and the GPL can no longer be enforced so there is no more open source since anything you release can be made into a non opensource product.

Re:A bad decision (1)

child_of_mercy (168861) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897582)

the GPL is a response to copyright.

yes you can turn the code into a non-opensource product, but the code is still free, if someone else gets it (in a no copyright world) then they too can do what they want with it.

release it as anything they damn well please.

if there was no copyright no-one would have needed to invent the GPL.

Re:A bad decision (1)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897534)

Untrue. If copyright was abolished, then there would be nothing stopping people from releasing binaries without source code. Stallman would have a fit.

Re:A bad decision (1)

child_of_mercy (168861) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897565)

yes but no-one would be forced to use their rotten binaries.

GPL is primarily a social contract, as I said, teh copyright aspects are primarily defensive.

i *have* read the colelcted essays of RMS - whether I understood them properly only time will tell.

My understanding is that the GPL is a response to copyright laws.

Re:A bad decision (2, Insightful)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897585)

yes but no-one would be forced to use their rotten binaries.
... I don't see what that has to do with what I said. Stallman is the "GNU/Free Software" guy, remember? His primary goal is to make the source code for all software available (in fact, he wants to make it illegal to distribute something without source code -- even if I wrote the thing myself.)

He sometimes claims that his purpose is to destroy copyright, but he wants more than that -- he wants copyright replaced with a system that enforces his particular views.

Re:A bad decision (1)

child_of_mercy (168861) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897602)

"he wants to make it illegal to distribute something without source code -- even if I wrote the thing myself"

only if you wrote it and used other people's GPL'd code.

My understanding is that those provisions are defensive in the current environment.

Without copyright anyone could redistribute and use your binaries tho, so why not release the source?

Re:A bad decision (1)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897616)

For someone who has read Stallman's essays, you sure don't understand his beliefs.

only if you wrote it and used other people's GPL'd code.


No. (Remember, in this post-copyright world, there is no GPL.) Right now, that's all the GPL enforces. However, I meant exactly what I said. RMS claims that it is immoral to release binaries without source code, and thus it should be forbidden. If I write something completely from scratch, and Stallman becomes king, it will be illegal for me to distribute the compiled binaries without giving away my source code.

Re:A bad decision (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897488)

This has nothing to do with copyright infringement. This has to do with publishing of PUBLIC COURT DOCUMENTS. RTFA.

Re:A bad decision (4, Informative)

anagama (611277) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897490)


Not the same at all.

May I suggest following the link? The "Fishman Affidavit" is a court record - a public document. Here, I'll help you out a little:

When Fishman was then brought to court, he used parts of Scientology-documents to prove he had been brainwashed by the Church. These Scientology documents thereby became public material: anybody could go to the court library and read them. The Church, fearing that its sacred secrets would be revealed, had some of their people going to the library every day to borrow these documents, thereby preventing other people (read: non-Scientologists) from reading them. Nevertheless, the Fishman Affidavit got copied (it was also available through the clerk of the court, for a mere $36.50). Somebody retrieved the affidavit via the clerk, scanned it, and posted it to the net. The Fishman Affidavit has been travelling on the Internet ever since.

Re:A bad decision -- SCO copyright (1)

screenrc (670781) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897554)

Time to call SCO's isp and tell them
about their copyright violation of Linux. It
is also time for SCO to call the isp's that
mirror kernel.org to have the linux removed,
and it is time to call SGI's isp to have
their copyright violations removed as well.
You see where this is heading.


In my opinion, it is best for the courts
to decide when (and if) to remove files from
the web.

apples compared to oranges (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897613)

Putting copyrighted works on the internet is still illegal.

Read the article read the decision read the website

Then post.

You are comparing apples to oranges.

Good to see. (4, Interesting)

Endareth (684446) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897390)

It seems to me that the two lower rulings being overturned is a great achievement. Linking to remote content almost defines what the web is! And making ISPs into police is always just asking for trouble. Well done the Hague!

Re:Good to see. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897500)

The earlier rulings were upheld, not overturned. It was the Church of Scientology that was appealing.

"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Insightful)

AEton (654737) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897400)

A religion that has trade secrets is a little frightening. And if you believe even a fraction of what the Xenu [xenu.net] people have to tell, it's more of a public service than anything else to expose the nonsense propaganda that this organization spreads.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897420)

In all fairness, though, there's translations of the Bible that are copyrighted and these copyrights are enforced. Now if you go and translate it from Hebrew, Greek, and the other languages used in the original texts, then you own the copyright and aren't subject to any trouble. Furthermore, I don't think anyone could possibly claim ownership to such translations as the king James Version. Most of the books you see published about Christianity are copyrighted, as are most of the hymns, though. It's a little different with scientology, but it's not the only religion whose texts are copyrighted.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897460)

The problem with your analogy is that these religions don't actually consider their copyrighted texts "Trade Secrets".

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (4, Insightful)

Babbster (107076) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897535)

Individual biblical works may be copyrighted in the sense that I can't obtain them, photocopy/transcribe them and then distribute the copies...but nobody is going to sue me for either singing a hymn or spreading "The Word" in ANY language. If, on the other hand, I spread the "history" espoused at the top level of Scientology there's probably a better than even chance that I will be sued.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897544)

If, on the other hand, I spread the "history" espoused at the top level of Scientology there's probably a better than even chance that I will be sued.

I think your chances of being sued are probably better than 100% actually.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (4, Funny)

R.Caley (126968) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897630)

...but nobody is going to sue me for either singing a hymn or spreading "The Word" in ANY language.

This is because Christianity has lost it's power base. Remember they used to burn people alive for translating the bible from latin just because doing so allowed the actual doctrine to leak out to ordinary people.

Hidden secrets are common in religions. A cynic might say this is because the stuff whichis most obviously bollocks has to be kept from people who haven't yet been brainwashed into complete gullability, but I couldn't say such a thing or Hastur will ge.....

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Insightful)

pyrrhonist (701154) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897548)

In all fairness, though, there's translations of the Bible that are copyrighted and these copyrights are enforced.

Yes, but the difference is that you are normally allowed to print up to 500 verses from these translations as long as you attribute the source. In non-profit printings, you can print as much as you want as long as you attribute the source. At least this is the way it is with the NIV and NRSB. Also, the text of the Bible is not secret. You can get it from multiple sources, with multiple translations, and some translations are in the public domain. No one will come after you if you link to it.

I don't think anyone could possibly claim ownership to such translations as the king James Version.

Nope, it's public domain: The KJV Bible [ibiblio.org]

Most of the books you see published about Christianity are copyrighted

Uh, what's the point? Most books are copyrighted. A book about Christianity is not a sacred text.

as are most of the hymns, though.

As are most secular songs. Some hymns are also public domain. Hymns are not a major tenet of Christianity. They even differ from church to church within Christianity.

but it's not the only religion whose texts are copyrighted.

Christianity's texts aren't copyrighted. The Bible isn't copyrighted. Other Christian works such as the "Apostle's Creed" aren't copyrighted either. Some translations of Christian works are copyrighted, and some of them aren't.

Anyone can translate the Bible and publish it.
Anybody can get a copy of the KJV and publish it.
I guarantee that neither Moses, Matthew, Mark, Luke, nor John will sue your ass for publishing it.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897557)

Surely Sonny Bono wasn't the only person who couldn't see any reason why copyrights should ever run out. I bet people like Jack Valenti would likely agree. So by extension, there most likely are people who would see nothing wrong with someone (the anglican church? the british royals? heirs of the translators?) having copyright to the King James Version of the bible.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897448)

Remember, some European countries have deported all of the scientologists who are there for "religious work". I think that Germany was one of said countries.

Religion has typically tried to assimilate as many people as possible, pretty openly, into it's grasp. Scientology's attempts to do this through a corporate mentality should bite it in the ass.

Two things that religions shouldn't be allowed to do, in my opinion, are to engage in politics and to have inaccessible "trade secret" documentation. Even as fiscally based as many churches are in the U.S., it's not impossible to look at pretty much all of their published works and opinions. Organizations that claim spirituality yet violate these two borders should be required to have corporate licenses and be taxed, in my opinion.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897475)

Hopefully when you say that religions shouldn't be allowed to engage in politics, you mean that they can't function as a political party. They ought to be able to make donations to any candidate just like any other organization is able to, under the election laws. Just because they're a religion doesn't mean they should be treated any differently. Also, they should be allowed to stage demonstrations, especially on certain issues. Whether or not you agree with the opinions of most Christian churches on abortion, they should have the right to peacefully demonstrate about issues and get their members to mail congressmen in mass about these issues.

On the other hand, if they decide to act as a political party, then they should lose tax-exempt status and be dealt with like any business under the laws of that country.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (2, Interesting)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897558)

I believe that any financial transaction between a church and a political official or candidate (from the church, not necessarily to the church) should be barred. Of course, I believe that any funding contribution from any organized group, rather than from private donors, should be illegal. This isn't to say that organizations should be barred from encouraging people so that people themselves make contributions, but it should not be processed in any way through the organization, nor should the organization keep any records of "commits" or the like. They should be free to voice their opinions, but it should stop there. This is supposed to be a country governed by people and for people, not by corporate or organizational puppets for organizations and corporations.

Other countries call this sort of corporate contribution a bribe, and could go so far as to call accepting money like that treason.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897578)

You're right. My point was, you ought to hold a church to the same rules you hold any other organization to. As long as it's legal for a company, special interest group, or other organization to contribute this way, it ought to be legal for a church to. I think we're in agreement, actually. :)

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897518)

A religion that has trade secrets is a little frightening.

Even more frightening when you consider that it was founded by a hack science fiction writer (L. Ron Hubbard) at least in part to prove that he could, (I've heard mixed reports from contemporary SF writers as to whether a bet was involved or not), and in part for tax reasons. It's possible that it got more out of hand than he originally intended -- but he certainly seemed to enjoy his years as a cult leader.

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Interesting)

Captain Sarcastic (109765) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897526)

I have to agree with AEton above.

Religions are given a tax-exempt status on the grounds that they are pursuing a "higher truth," one that is supposed to be shared with others.

Not so with Scientology. Try looking for one of their texts in the public library, and you'll more often than not find them missing. They say that "the world isn't ready for these truths yet," but still believe that they should enjoy the protection granted to other religions that do make their messages freely available.

They can't have it both ways - either Scientology has trade secrets (in which case it is a business) or it doesn't (in which case it is a church).

Thud

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (3, Funny)

donnz (135658) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897536)

I get so confused by propaganda - is that the same religion that spreads the virgin birth and cannibalism nonsense...or are there others?

Re:"Confidential" nature of religious documents? (5, Informative)

arvindn (542080) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897547)


Absolutely. If anyone reading this hasn't already read the stuff at xenu.net, please please do so now to know what the CoS is really about. In fact, it is not a religion at all, but merely uses the pretense of religion as a veil for a massive and fraudulent operation of psychological abuse. The aim, of course, is to strip you of your last penny.

Bleeding IP? (5, Insightful)

Empiric (675968) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897402)

Hmm... the article seems to center more on "common carrier" arguments and paraphrasing of the original work, the paraphrase of which is posted as content on the site, rather than linking, but regardless...

It amazes me that the "Church of Scientology" continues to pursue this, after the well-known Usenet debacle. I don't see how it helps their image at all, trying to force people not to discuss their "religion". This activity only adds fuel to the fire. Surely they have their share of lawyers or PR consultants on board, doesn't the basic concept of sticking to your points and ignoring/downplaying your opposition's get on the strategy table?

The disturbing part here is Scientology's continuing attempt to treat opposing views or information as derivative products of their ideas, and shut them down as if they were an IP violation. Maybe what Enron should have done is patent the concept of cooked books, and sued anyone talking about it.

Re:Bleeding IP? (1)

Nels (325798) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897414)

The Church of Scientology doesn't really care much about image to the public at large. It preys upon the rich and brain-damaged, people who are so clueless that they will give money to a religion inspired by science fiction.
As a result, absolutely any method that gets them their goal of information suppression is completely worth trying, since it can't hurt, and can help keep the rich and ignorant ignorant, and move towards removing their status and rich and replacing it with the status of a member of the Church of Scientology.

This is an amazing victory (4, Insightful)

IamLarryboy (176442) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897413)

This is an amazing victory for free speech. The COS is a rich dangerous cult that is amazingly adept at using the courts to silence its victims. It really is incredable that the good guys won in this case.

Heh (5, Funny)

True Dork (8000) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897416)

I first read that as "Thinking ruled is legal in Scientology Case" and thought "It's about time!". Oh well. I wouldn't dare think anything about the case... Hold on... Someone's at my door.

You know what's a really odd religion... (-1, Offtopic)

ultrapenguin (2643) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897418)

Is this: "creation" of a rich japanese individual who claims was buddah in his "previous life". [google.com] .
"Membership" in that "cult" requires purchase/reading of at least 10 books written by this "individual", each book being fairly expensive, not something you'd call pocket change, anyhow.
Main focuses of this "religious cult" are on "research of happiness", which is just bullshit excuse for "suck in as many members while taking all their money" kind of thing.

Because japanese people in general are quite gullible, the group has been able to attract huge numbers of "members" who are required to buy more books, materials, and visit the churches built by the cult in order to generate more money for Ookawa Ryuho, ths cult's founder.

And you thought scientology was bad...

Re:You know what's a really odd religion... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897519)

damn, how the fuck is that offtopic.
the article is about scientology, I compare another "successfull" cult religion to scientology, get moderated down to offfuckingtopic.

Reminder to self, never post controversial stuff while logged in.

Re:You know what's a really odd religion... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897540)

Reminder to self, never to post to Slashdot.

You knew it was coming... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897426)

I for one welcome our new Church of Scientology overlords

IN SOVIET RUSSIA (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897512)

Church of Scientology overlords welcome YOU!

IN SOVIET RUSSIA... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897528)

dicks suck YOU!!!!!

Proud (5, Interesting)

olderchurch (242469) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897433)

This makes me proud to be a dutchmen. And proud to use the excellent services from xs4all. They always have been a strong supporter of both privacy and free speech and are willing to back it up. Even though they went from a hacker provider to one of the major league telco subsidairies.

xs4all keep up the good work!

Never called what it really is (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897438)

Scientology = a satanic cult.

They never call it that, but that's what all of the teachings really are. Their basic ideas is that you are the center of the universe, and anything you do to anybody to obtain your goals is OK. And their rituals (with the E-meter) are just as strange. The only reason for giving it a different name is that "Scientology" is able to recruit celebrities, while those same celebrities typically avoid anything with obvious satanic connotations.

(of course the way Bill Gates manages Microsoft often reminds me of Scientology, but that's a separate topic ;-)

Scientology and Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897479)

(of course the way Bill Gates manages Microsoft often reminds me of Scientology, but that's a separate topic ;-)

You put a smiley in for humor, but there is nothing funny about the Scientologist software in Windows [go.com] .

Re:Scientology and Microsoft (1)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897595)

You put a smiley in for humor, but there is nothing funny about the Scientologist software in Windows.

Frightened of a disk defragger, heh?

I think that this is one case where the Germans freaked out just a bit too much. The forbidding of the software had nothing to do with the technical merits of the code.

Of course, this is all MS closed source stuff. so you can't verify it as safe. But still, if it is a good piece of code, who cares?

Imagine if it was found out that one of the coders contributing to the linux kernal was a scientologist. Imagine the reaction of the german government based on this example.

hey, it could happen.

e-meter sessions (4, Interesting)

lightspawn (155347) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897498)

... And their rituals (with the E-meter) are just as strange.

Not really. Their main purpose is four-fold:

1. Provide a means for subject to discuss problems with another human being (on some very basic level, it does help, I suppose).

2. Pass a low current through subject to introduce a sense of euphoria, which is both addictive and lowers resistance (heh) to interrogator's questions.

3. Alert interrogator to any issues which may weaken hold on subject.

4. Provide information on subject to be used if hold on subject ever looks like it may be broken.

So, what happens in the U.S. if a organization is ever certified as a "religion" by mistake? Is any means available to undo it?

Re:Never called what it really is (1)

dvcx1 (692619) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897522)

Scientology = a satanic cult

First let me say, I am not religious to any extent. I believe what I wish and I leave it at that.

I don't see the relevance of Scientology as a satanic cult. From what I have read, I would agree to say scientology is not the best thing and people should be made aware of this fact. But to state that it is "a satanic cult" is a mis-statement. I really don't feel this is the forum to have a religious debate, especially considering your comments are coming from a christian point of view. If you consider scientology's way of practice strange, would you also goto the the extent of critisizing hinduism (one of the oldest religions in the world and definately quite big) as a cult?

Just my rant....

on a lighter note, I do wish the USSC would take a note from some of the other nations on these topics.

Re:Never called what it really is (-1)

exspecto (513607) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897571)

From a Christian point of view? I believe you could come to the same conclusions that he did just by reading the official "Satanic Bible".

Re:Never called what it really is (1)

dvcx1 (692619) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897623)

I agree with you.

Its nothing against christians, just an observation, only christians tend to refer to others as "satanic" when others beliefs dont concur with their beliefs.

anyway enough of the religious rant, this is supposed to be about the win of free speech in dutch courts.

Re:Never called what it really is (1)

Nihilanth (470467) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897577)

of course, "satanic" means different things to different people.

what is "satanic" basically depends on whether or not you're asking a christian. People who identify themselves as "satanists" would most likely be offended at being compared to scientologists, since contemporary satanism is based around the idea of rejecting faulty moralism and decaying value systems while persuing a more genuine mode of behavior.

Re:Never called what it really is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897608)

There's a number of interpretations on what Satanism is. Anyways, here's a link [sweenytod.com] that compares Scientology to some other religions and details the connections between Scientology and the Occult. And the Occult would be one definition of Satanism that a lot of people regognize as such.

What they *really* are. (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897564)

Actually, they are organized criminials and terrorists masquarading as a cult. Why do you think they run all these front companies? Money laundering and tax evasion. Rread the comments on the site linked in the story, find the really long one where some guy wrote about the 10 odd years of his life he wasted on these creeps, he mentions several said front companies there and the illegal practices they did. Yes, it is in english. You can't miss it, it fills half the page. They are a LOT like Al Qaida, only its an American organization instead of an islamic one.

Re:Never called what it really is (2, Funny)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897583)


> Scientology = a satanic cult. They never call it that, but that's what all of the teachings really are. Their basic ideas is that you are the center of the universe, and anything you do to anybody to obtain your goals is OK.

How do you know they aren't just politicians instead of satanists?

Why aren't links just considered a citation format (5, Insightful)

jbs0902 (566885) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897445)

I never understood the Plaintiff's legal logic behind these "linking" equals "copyright violation" cases. (I get the overall logic of "We are powerful. You are not. We'll make you shut-up if we don't like what you say." But, it is the logic in the legal briefs I don't get.)

As far as I am concerned the A tag of HTML is just a citation format. If the link is a copyright violation, why aren't citations made in MLA or Blue Book formats similar copyright violations? The idea extends to deep-linking cases. If deep-linking allows you to skip past the ads on a web page and is supposedly illegal because of that, why aren't pin-point citations (where you cite both the book and the page on the book where the quote is from) illegal?

I'll accept that a trade secret case could be filed, but copyright? If it is a link, it is not a copy; it is a citation, i.e. a pointer to the original "copy" of the web page.

I haven't bothered to do any research on this (because it has yet to directly affect my life). Has any defendant advanced the A tag as citation argument? Did the judge buy it?

Re:Why aren't links just considered a citation for (3, Insightful)

Tokerat (150341) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897523)


What I don't understand is the fact that in these deep link cases, the sites didn't take any steps to prevent the deep linking through passwords ro REFERER checks...that's akin to putting a poster of information near a window in your house and suing people who walk by the window and see it. How any judge could rule in their favor is beyond me.

Wanna know the meaning of scientology? (5, Funny)

civilengineer (669209) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897447)

Here is what dictionary.com says:

scientology: log in for this definition of scientology and other entries in Webster's Millennium(TM) Dictionary of English, available only to Dictionary.com Premium members

Re:Wanna know the meaning of scientology? (1)

True Dork (8000) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897482)

I'm actually afraid to. Lessee... We're talking about Scientology and they want my credit card. Let me think about that... oh yeah, NO.

Imagine that. (3, Interesting)

cgranade (702534) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897461)

The courts actually ruled that free speech is more importatnt than IP. Now, if only the USSC could follow suit...

Scientology (4, Funny)

Nanite (220404) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897467)

I think a litmus test for all future court cases should be: "If the case is brought by the Church of Scientology, it must have no merit."

Philip knew how to treat the Knights Templar (3, Interesting)

tjstork (137384) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897470)


Ought to deal with Scientologists the same way. If their work is so secret that they cannot have it published, then perhaps they are consorting with Baphomet too!

Re:Philip knew how to treat the Knights Templar (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897524)

See www.xenu.net and Karin Spaink's site for what Stupidology teaches (secretly) and at great expense. Scientology price list shows it would take about $360,000.00 to do all their courses to obtain OT VIII. The secret teachings about how an ancient space dictator Xenu inplanted us all with body thetans (space cooties) we have to audit out at great expensse is something Scientology wants to keep secret because nobody in their right mind who knew that ahead of time would join scientology knowing that. Which is why Scientology sues and sues and sues. Once EVERYBODY knows, they are sunk. What this Dutch court has said in essence is, no, copyright law was not meant to keep such information from being discussed and proven from a cult's own writings. Its even stupider than Satanism. And that is why they are utterly desperate to keep Hubbard's drivel from being made public in a manner they cannot deny.

Re: Philip knew how to treat the Knights Templar (2, Funny)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897562)


> Ought to deal with Scientologists the same way. If their work is so secret that they cannot have it published, then perhaps they are consorting with Baphomet too!

Nah, Baphy told them to stuff it. Standards to maintain, kind of thing.

Odd: (5, Interesting)

Mac Degger (576336) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897474)

Considering how important I take this ruling to be (it's a ruling upholding fair use and against strong-arm tactics; and it sets a nice precedent) for the web, I'm surprised this isn't being covered in the news in the Netherlands...it didn't even make regional tv.
I wonder if it makes the back pages of the papers...

Scientologists sue. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897619)

News organizations don't like gettting sued.
Scientologists also run lots of news organizations.

BEGONE FOUL THETAN! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897476)

That'll be $40,000 please!

Anyone stupid enough to follow scientology deserves to die of ass cancer!

WELCOME! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897477)

I, for one, welcome our new Xenu overlords.

Re: WELCOME! (0, Offtopic)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897601)


> I, for one, welcome our new Xenu overlords.

s/Xenu/Dutch/

Suppressed Documents (5, Informative)

heli0 (659560) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897487)

Rob Malda: "Our lawyers have advised us that, considering all the details of this case, the comment should come down"

Here is the document that Slashdot removed when COS threatened them with the DMCA: http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Fishman/Declaration/o t3-summary.html [cmu.edu]

Hosted right here in the USA by Dr. David Touretzky, research professor at Carnegie Mellon University.

Re: Suppressed Documents (3, Funny)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897594)


> Here is the document that Slashdot removed when COS threatened them with the DMCA: http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Fishman/Declaration/o t3-summary.html

Yeah, I can kinda see why they wouldn't want anyone to see that. Out of context it could leave the impression that they were some kind of k00ks or something.

Go XS4ALL! (5, Informative)

Martin Wolf (703415) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897502)

This proves once more that XS4ALL is one of the greatest ISPs in Europe and possibly the world. No, I'm not affiliated with them, other than being a very happy customer.

Let's face it, how many ISPs would stand by their customer against a rich and dangerous opponent? How many would simply have pulled Karin Spank's site at the first hint of trouble, without caring whether the complaint was justified?

XS4ALL was started by the Dutch hacker group "hack-tic" in a time when Internet access was not available to the general public. Although they are a commercial entity and were bought by the national phone company a few years ago, they remain faithful to the spirit in which they were founded and to their original goals: to promote full, uncensored and unconstrained Internet access for everyone.

Technically, they're great as well -- in my five years as a customer, I've only had a handful of short outages and all of them were caused by the ADSL infrastructure rather than the provider. Power users who want to run Linux, set up a home network and run their own web/mail server are not just allowed, they're encouraged. There's an on-line service page through which you can maintain things like spamfilters, a firewall (off by default, but easy to turn on and heavily promoted) and an experimental IPv6 tunnel. They run a number of game servers themselves and during Gulf War II, they participated in a digital TV trial which offered several Arabian stations in addition to BBC Worldnews etc.

In short, if you're a geek, you should move to the Netherlands just so you can get an XS4ALL account.

Re:Go XS4ALL! (3, Funny)

BlindSpot (512363) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897531)

XS4ALL is also the host of Python's official web site [python.org] , so in a small way - probably a very very small way - this is also a victory for open source!

Re:Go XS4ALL! (1)

Babbster (107076) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897591)

One would hope that with the international nature of the Internet, we would be able to set up accounts simply by contacting them and arranging payment. Moving to the land of wooden shoes seems like overkill. :)

Like my Old Man used to say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897539)

You can't kill enough Scientologists.

But I'm sure he also would of said "You can win enough court cases against Scientologist"

I'm not rich enough or uneducated enough to be a Scientologist.

Re:Like my Old Man used to say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897586)

Since so many celibrities are scientologists, it's clearly the one true religion.

Thinking (-1)

exspecto (513607) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897545)

Was I the only person who first read that as "Dutch rules that thinking is legal"? How appropriate that would have been in regards to Scientology.

What could be the problem with links? (4, Funny)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897549)

Every Slashdotter knows no-one reads them anyway....

With her stuff dated 1999.. Why is this so new? (1)

ivi (126837) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897573)


I'm a bit confused as to the news-worthiness
of this story... The latest document in her
list of stuff she used in her defence is 1999

Surely it didn't take the court 3 years to find?!?

What am I missing here? ;-\

TIA

Re:Why is this so new? OOPSIE!!! (1)

ivi (126837) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897611)


OK, folks... Sorry... I see that it was an appeal
that got decided on 4 Sep 2003.

Mu! (Ie, I un-ask my earlier question... ;-)

Scientology's Plan... (4, Insightful)

tonywestonuk (261622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897579)

How to get this site off the web...

Plan a: Sue em!
(if that doesn't work)
Plan b: Get their link posted to Slashdot..... that'll burn their serves off the net!

Seriously, I was approached by the Scientologiests a few years back (before knowing anything about them). I was a little naieve (sp?) , and signed up for a course in Dynetics... What they said seemed very plausible. The people who were running this course did seam a tad strange, almost as if they were in a daze....

After doing a search on Infoseek for dynetics, (Google wasn't around then), I was quite shocked what these people could be up to. I decided not to return, though they phoned me back loads of times trying to persuade me to.

I now consider Scientology akin to a computer virus, exploiting a flaw in the human brain, and spread from one to the next. First the brain is rooted. Trust is gained. And then, over the corse of many months, subsystem after subsystem is taken down. All for the persuit of cash. The net could well have saved me, by downloading info into my head, that prevents rooting by these people.

I can only feel sorry for those who are already taken over by this cult.

Re:Scientology's Plan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897626)

spelling lesson for u

naieve = naive

dynetics = dianetics

I can only feel sorry for those who are already taken over by this cult.

That's funny .. they sued "cult awareness network" for slander/libel etc. about 10 years ago .. and guess what .. the judge awarded them control of the organization ... so they now run cult awareness network!

What is really scarry (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6897604)

Lots of these cult members are lawyers and media types. Foxes Gretta (used to be at CNN) is one. She is pretty popular rating wise.

As far as I am concerned any group that has engaged in the acts that have been often alleged against them should be outlawed as some European countries have done. Short of that hunting them down and putting a stake through their hearts is a valid option.

Most Intersting Quote From Descion (0)

cluge (114877) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897606)

Finally, defendant sub 23 appeals to her right of free speech. Her texts enjoy the particularly high level of protection as defined in art. 10 EVRM. It is of the utmost importance that said texts are shown, as a warning, as those texts are based on the repulsion of the values of a democratic society. In this case the right to free speech prevails above copyright protection, if the latter applies.

In Soviet Russia (-1, Flamebait)

MikeCapone (693319) | more than 11 years ago | (#6897629)

Scientology makes sense...
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