Feeds

Scientology critics fight YouTube takedown notices

Push Me F*ck You

The Power of One Infographic

Net users are fighting back against attempts to remove content critical of the Church of Scientology (CoS) from YouTube.

American Rights Counsel LLC, apparently acting on behalf of the Church of Scientology, sent 4,000 DMCA takedown notices to YouTube late last week, the Electronic Frontier Foundation reports. The notices allege copyright infringement over clips critical of the Church of Scientology.

YouTube is legally obliged to respond to such notices regardless of their merits, and as a result numerous videos were pulled. These included the BBC documentary Scientology and Me and clips posted by anti-Scientology collective Anonymous. Many accounts were suspended over the weekend as a result of the action.

Critics of Scientology have responded with DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) counter-notices, leading to the restoration of many of the affected videos and suspended channels. Some speculate that at least part of the reason for the pro-Scientology legal offensive is an attempt to uncover the real identity of critics of the church.

DMCA complaints have been deployed as weapons by the Church of Scientology in the past. In June, the Church used similar complaints of copyright infringement to force the suspension of a YouTube channel run by anti-Scientology activist Mark Bunker. Bunker's XenuTV account was again targeted in the latest legal offensive against critics of the church, the EFF notes.

Reg reader Peter notes a possible significance in the timing of the latest legal squabble between the church and its critics. An anti-Scientology congress took place in Hamburg, Germany over the weekend, and protests by Anonymous against the Church of Scientology's treatment of children and involvement in schools are due to take place next Saturday (13 September), he notes. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws
Only 49 politcos voted against DRIP bill
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.