Friday, April 18, 2008

Supression on YouTube

Last week, a critic of Scientology, Tory Christman, a warm, caring, compassionate, sometimes wacky person had her YouTube account pulled for reasons yet to be explained to her. All of her videos are of her in front of her web cam, telling about her experiences in the organization. Nothing violent, nothing obscene, nothing defamatory...just Tory telling her story. When she was asked to open fake Internet accounts in order to suppress the flow of information and discussion on the news group alt.religion.scientology, a news group for critics, Tory "blew" or left the "church". She was not for the suppression of free speech. In fact, one of the reasons she got into Scientology in the first place was because they claimed to be all about freedoms.

After many complaints to YouTube, Tory's account was re-instated. No explanation, no apology.

A few days later, another critic, this time, Emmy award winner Mark Bunker had his account pulled. He has been chronicling various pickets against Scientology for years, showing just how this "church" that was all about communication and the betterment of man, was really, in their own words, not a "turn the other cheek religion". They pressed Mark and other picketers about their alleged "crimes", because, after all, only an abberated criminal would picket a church. Mark Bunker showed the face of Scientology you don't see when they ask, "Would you like to take a free personality test?"

Bunker was about to release a video of an interview of actor Jason Beghe, who talks about his experiences in Scientology and why he finally left. The three minute "teaser" that Mark had posted earlier showed a man, very pissed off at the organization, and obviously had a lot of beans to spill. No where near as eloquent as Tory, but his message was very clear...Scientology is one f*cked up religion.

But, the day came, and with Mark's account pulled, no Beghe interview.

Scientology said years ago that they would "handle the Internet". If these suspensions are indeed the act of Scientology, what they would consider a "win", is going to be more like blow-back. It's as if Scientology, despite their shiny videos on their flashy website, are stuck in a pre-Internet mindset. L. Ron could not have perceived the Internet, how it would become a soap-box for many bloggers, vloggers and general discussion channels dwellers. Somewhere where the common man (or woman) could make his or her opinions known. All his "tech" is based in a time of mimeos, telexes and dictation machines. It's like trying to figure out how to operate a two-way radio with instructions on how to build a walkie-talkie with two cans and a bale of twine.

Tory Christman said that Scientology is creating it's own enemies. And they are enemies they cannot vanquish.

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