- Scientologist Juerg Stettler's response to Freenet creator Ian Clarke
- Original interview with Ian Clarke in which he mentions Scientology
- Update from "Anti-Cult" on Scientology's new net-censoring software
December 17, 2000
In response to "Not even I could censor or turn off Freenet," SonntagsZeitung of 10 December.
We are certainly known for much. But we are not against criticism on the internet, as Clarke has claimed. Namely, criticism can be very constructive. But the internet may not become a lawless space in which copyrights may be violated or libel may be bandied about; that is what we are against. In addition, child pornography, contrary to Clarke's opinion, certainly has nothing to do with expression of opinion, but with outright crime. Even the internet should have to keep to the fundamentals of standard law.
Juerg Stettler, Scientology Church, Zurich
"Not even I could censor or turn off Freenet"
Freenet inventor Ian Clarke explains how his revolutionary network functions and why Napster in fact is dead
by Alexandra Broehm
SonntagsZeitung: Ian Clarke, how did Freenet come about?
Ian Clarke: I developed the fundamental structure of the system in my graduate work in information technology. Then I published the proposal on the internet. I have been working with 25 volunteers since July 1999 to design the system and to write the software. In March 2000 we put the first version on the net, now we're constantly improving the whole.
What is special about Freenet?
Clarke: Freenet is a system in which there is no centralized control. That is the way one protects the network from outside attack. Not even I could censor or turn off Freenet.
In order to participate in Freenet, do I just download the Freenet software on my computer?
Clarke: Yes. By doing that one's own computer becomes an equal share part of the network. There are not hierarchies, all computers work together and form the network as a whole.
What was your motivation in designing Freenet?
Clarke: The technical challenge attracted me into planning such a decentralized system. Mostly I wanted to do something for freedom of information and freedom of opinion. I am very concerned about the internet getting censored more and more by the state.
But there are good reasons for control. That is the way state agencies want to combat things like terrorism and organized crime.
Clarke: Yes, only terrorists are already seeing to it that their data is not so easily accessible. So it ends up being only the people who think they have nothing to hide who are being targeted by this system. That means people like you and me. Or at least you anyway, I'm not entirely sure about me.
But doesn't the immense flood of data prevent total surveillance?
Clarke: I don't think so. There is always a better program which is in the situation of monitoring thousands of e-mails in one second. So it is possible to monitor an immense number of people on a widespread basis. In monitoring, for example, which web sites people visit, a profile of their sexual or political orientations can be produced.
[ ... snip ... ]
SonntagsZeitung: Without control it would also be easier to spread racist ideology or child pornography.
Clarke: Now, that is certainly a risk, but I an an adherent of free expression of opinion. And if you take that seriously, you have to be ready to defend even those things which people find reprehensible.
[ ... snip ... ]
SonntagsZeitung: Are there central themes?
Clarke: Much political information. And information which is censored on the internet, such as for example some material on Scientology. Because Scientology is well-known for threatening legal measures against anyone who puts critical information on the internet. Of course there is also pornography and MP3s, but really those are an entirely different matter.
Hasn't anyone tried to sue you yet?
Clarke: That would be senseless. I cannot interfere in the system. Naturally people could try to sue me, but such a suit would be pointless.
What for you is especially important in P2P?
Clarke: I find it very important that people use their computers themselves and actively participate in the internet. The net should not just turn into another medium which people only consume.
[ ... snip ... ]
SonntagsZeitung: At the moment you are working on a new project by the name of Uprizer?
Clarke: That is very secret. But I can tell you this much: we will attempt to convert the Freenet technology into various areas. The media state that we would want to be the new Napster. That is not correct.
But you would like to make money with Freenet technology?
Clarke: Naturally, we would like to earn very much money.
What's your vision for the internet of the future?
Clarke: I would like to see the internet get back to its roots. There should be a system in which people can actively participate. My wish is that everyone also produce information on the internet and not just consume it. That is the real value of the net.
From: ©Anti-Cult® - www.users.wineasy.se/noname/ The.Galactic.Federation@ThePentagon.com Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: Update on the Scieno Sitter Fascisto-ware. E-mail sent to Field Staff Members. Date: Sat, 16 Dec 2000 23:09:24 +0100
Now it seems as if the Scieno Sitter Fascisto-ware, is downloadable from the Fascisto-network.
Found in A.C.T, posted by Claudia Kasch, and snipped down to relevant parts by me:
The following eMail was sent to FSMs (Field Staff Members), which shows, that the CoS is still active in censorship.
Dear FSM On-Line,
As you know, part of the Scientologist On-Line program (as in the legal agreement which you signed) includes Internet Filtering software that we have developed which blocks entheta email messages, if any were to be sent to you by the few 2.5% lingering on the Internet.
We will periodically be providing updated versions of this filter program to ensure that your comm lines are protected. Thus, if you have already installed the filter software, you should do so again in order to utilize the most recent version. (Restart your computer after doing so for the update to take effect.) Note that if you already installed the "CleanMail" program you do not need to reinstall it.
If you have not yet installed the filter program, you should do so now.
This software is simple to install and is compatible with Windows 95 as well as Windows NT 4.0. (With Service Pack 3) Note that the software is not yet compatible with Windows 98. A Windows 98 compatible version is being worked on and you will be notified as soon as it is available.
The big advantage of using this filter program is that it makes it possible for you to shred any entheta unsolicited messages - if they ever happen to be sent to you - without even having to look at them.
So follow the installation instructions at the end of this email message in order to install the filter software and then email me back letting me know that you have done so.
How the filter software works:
The filtration software is comprised of two separate computer programs: one is the filter program itself, which actually blocks incoming data if this is needed. While downloading your email messages, for instance, the filter detects incoming email messages that should be blocked and does so. If this occurs, you will see an error message -- if you use Netscape's email software, for example, you will see the following error message: "A network error occurred while Netscape was receiving data. (Network Error:) Try connecting again.". Note that some email programs will not show any error, but will simply fail to download any email.
If this occurs, it is neccessary to use the other program, "CleanMail" which will delete the offending email message(s) before you receive it from your Internet Service Provider.
Please note that the filter software requires Windows 95 or Windows NT (with Service Pack 3) and is designed for use with the most common type of email box for use with Internet access (POP* accounts). If you are not using such an email system please let me know at: email@example.com.
*POP stands for Post Office Protocol, the communication method commonly used for Receiving email on the Internet.
The filter software:
1. First, you need to download the files necessary to install the software. Do this by going to the following Internet addresses: (Many email programs will allow you to double-click on the addresses enter or type them into your web browser.) http://on-line.scientology.org/sw.download/setup.exe http://on-line.scientology.org/sw.download/clean.exe
When you go to each of these addresses, you will be informed that you have chosen to download a file from the Internet and you then simply need to save it in a convenient location on your computer such as your desktop.
2. Once you have saved the files, double-click on "setup.exe" and you will see another window appear -- click on the "OK" button to install the software.
3. Restart your computer.
Note for America On-Line Users: Skip the rest of these instructions and read the special note at the bottom of this message.
The Cleanmail software:
1. Double-click the "clean.exe" icon and then click on the "OK" button.
2. You will now have two new icons on your desktop - one called "CleanMail" and the other called "resetcln".
3. Connect to the Internet, double-click on the "CleanMail" icon and then go on to the next step.
4. At this point you will need three pieces of information normally provided by your Internet Service Provider. These are: The Internet "address" of your Internet Service Provider's email computer sytem. (Find a list of commonly used examples below.) Your username Your email password Note that you will only need to enter this information once.
5. Once you have entered in this information, simply click the "OK" button. At this point the program will run and check through any email waiting for you in your emailbox that you have not yet received. Once this is complete, the cleanmail program installation is finished and you can use the program again simply by double-clicking on the "cleanmail" icon.
Note that when you have completed the installations above, you can move the "filter" and "cleanmail" folder from you desktop to some other folder on your computer if you wish.
Reading your email in the future:
In the future, if you ever see an error message when receiving your email simply run the "cleanmail" program. This will remove the offending message. After this is done, you can re-check your message to receive the rest of your email.
Reinstallation (Settings Change)
1. If for some reason you get an error message when you attempt to install the cleanmail program, or if you need to change the settings that you entered when you installed it for any reason, double-click on the "resetcln" icon which is also contained in the "CleanMail" folder. 2. Click "OK" on the dialog box that appears. 3. Double-Click on the "CleanMail" icon again and you will be able to re-enter the cleanmail settings again.
If you have any questions regarding these instructions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our toll-free technical support line at: 1-888-307-7410 or 1-213-960-1975.
A few commonly used Internet Service Providers with the name of their Email Systems Listed:Internet Service Provider Email Computer ------------------------------------------------------------ ---------------- -------- Earthlink mail.earthlink.net Relaypoint mail.relaypoint.net GTE mail.gte.net Pathcom mail.pathcom.com Erols pop.erols.com Magic Internet Services mail.minot.com Mindspring mail.mindspring.com IntNet mail.intnet.net Special Note for America On-Line Users: -----------------------------------------------------------
This filter program is not fully compatible with America On-Line, (the email blocking features do not work with America On-Line email) however you can still take advantage of it. In order to do this, ensure you do not use the web browser built in to the America On-Line software, but instead use a separate web browser to surf the world wide web. (Such as Microsoft Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator.)
This is simple to do. Simply sign on to AOL as usual but instead of surfing the Web via the America On-Line software, simply "minimize" it (click on button with the underline "_" on it in the very upper-right hand corner of the window) and then launch your web browser. (Internet Explorer, for example, is launched by double clicking on the "Internet Explorer" icon on your desktop or on some systems it may appear as "The Internet".)
If you have any questions about this, you can email us at: email@example.com.
More evidence that L. Ron Hubbard really was one of the greatest liars and criminals of all times. What it says about his followers, who believe the Hubbardian crap, that is up to the readers to decide:
"We, by the way, have generated atomic fission without the use of uranium. This is not a difficult thing to do. All you do is synthesize a gamma ray and synthesize some other rays and by concentrating them, you can get an atomic explosion."
("Radiation", lecture of 5 November 1956)
---------------------------------------------------------------------******* Body thetans? We don't need no stinking Body Thetans! ******* *********** http://www.users.wineasy.se/noname/index.htm ************ IRC #Scientology JavaChat http://www.users.wineasy.se/noname/irc.html * Multimedia: http://www.users.wineasy.se/noname/multimed/index.htm * ******** The.Galactic.Federation@ThePentagon.com (Anti-Cult) ******** ---------------------------------------------------------------------
New ways to combat web racism
Politicians and agencies have only limited success so far
March 3, 2000
Neue Zuercher Zeitung
by David Rosenthal*
For several years, government agencies, private citizens and politicians have been trying to take measures against racism on the internet. With only limited success: as long as nations like the USA protect racist publications, the hands of Switzerland and other nations are tied. However, there are still solutions, as the author presents in the following:
A year and a half ago, the Federal Police made their first attempt. They tried to force Swiss internet access providers to block racist pages from foreign countries. The attempt failed; since then providers and authorities have been working on a mutual solution to the problem - so far without success. On the contrary: after a confusing judgment by the Federal Court on the applicability of the criminal law to the media for racist statements last year, legal indecision has increased even more.
No prosecution across national borders
While it is possible to initiate immediate legal procedures against a Swiss provider who tolerates racist content on his computers, the attempt at prosecution 'by proxy' of Swiss providers for racist content on "foreign" internet computers has proved to be unrealistic and legally objectionable - and not compatible with the rest of Europe. For instance, Germany and the EU intend to free providers from responsibility in their e-commerce regulation by merely forwarding the content without exercising selection. Besides that, technical processes to restrict access to illegal content, at least under current circumstances, do not present any solution which, in turn, would not create problems just as big.
That directs increasing attention to the "source" of the questionable content. It is simple in principle: if illicit content is really to be prevented, then that must happen where it is put on the net. In matters of racism, that is primarily in the USA. Indeed, large providers like America Online have taken measures against racist offerings on their public systems when they have been made aware of it. Racist groups, however, can retreat to their own autonomous internet computers without problem because their provider has separated its own responsibility from that of the content put on the net by its customers. This circumstance is also being exploited by people in foreign countries who use computers on U.S. territory to globally distribute their propaganda. In this way, the USA has used the label of freedom of speech to develop into the world's leading "safe harbor" for racists.
Taking action against the source
If countries like Switzerland intend to undertake anything against that, new trails must be blazed. Whether they are politically opportune or realistic will be left undecided here. If one wants to get the problem in hand, that will not be possible without first getting the cooperation of the provider - and that means the provider at the source of the racist publications, not each one at this end of the chain in Switzerland, as has been looked at up til now. If the source is in the USA, state pressure is eliminated [as an alternative]. U.S. authorities and legislators are forbidden by the Constitution to ban or punish, based on content, any kind of expression of thought which is not connected to criminal acts or actual violence against people.
However, private providers in the USA are not obligated to tolerate racist publications on their computers or in their "connections." Therefore, one possible strategy would be to exert pressure on the individual provider. That could lead to criminal prosecution of the management of any provider who knowingly and willfully supported racist publications - and not just in the USA, but in foreign countries. Up to now the authorities in Europe have been taking measures against providers in their own countries. With already existing legal instruments, it is conceivable that criminal proceedings could also be initiated in Switzerland against a large US access provider as responsible party - but not against local representatives as scapegoats.
In consideration of the fact that many of these providers are penetrating the international market today, they would probably not want to be exposed to such a risk. This method is already being practiced by the USA itself. The German authorities, with a powerful wave, were also just recently able to move through the American maze of internet book dealing in getting Amazon.com to no longer sell Adolf Hitler's "Mein Kampf" in Germany. In the area of data security, the EU was also able, by threatening to take legal measures, to force American corporations in the USA into negotiation on mutual data security agreements.
Winning key figures
Pressure upon American providers could also be used in other ways. One possibility would be to win key figures on the internet over to the fight against racism on the net: for instance, government agencies and larger providers could declare that they would give services to providers who do not support racism. Stormfront.org, for instance, one of the leading U.S. internet platforms for racists, is serviced by Sprint, a U.S. telecommunications company which is to be taken over by MCI Worldcom, which is also active here in Switzerland. This method has already functioned well in the area of data security. Thoughts have already been expressed about blocking racist groups from access to the internet, and this would be possible today without anything further because these groups are managed by private organizations who define their own rules. The withdrawal of a domain name would be thought of by many to be the equivalent of, de facto, excluding a provider.
Dangers of Self-regulation
Just this one example shows adequately that new "solutions" to the problem of racist publications on the internet are, indeed, conceivable, attractive and probably effective. Yet because of imminent danger of misuse, many of the measures discussed are also very risky - after all, this is playing with fire. In this connection, therefore, many branches of the internet are appealed to for "self-regulation." What is often overlooked in doing that: the sensitive decision of what is to be accessible from the internet is a delicate decision, but is being given to private organizations who distribute opinion and information over the internet market without any democratic justification, without supervision of the courts and without Constitutional guarantees. For instance, in the USA today, individual people in companies who make filter programs for the internet decide what should be accessible and what not for schools, libraries and government agencies in the American State of Utah. The filter in question blocks, for example, access to the Koran, the Adventures of Sherlock Homes and an essay against racism.
In addition to that, there is a risk that, for example, an anti-democratic regime would use a filter and blocking mechanism under the pretext of the fight against racism for its own purposes to exercise censorship which would not be legitimate according to today's standards. The same goes for private organizations who do not wish text from the internet which is not accepted them to be accessed. For instance, Scientology managed to intimidate the provider Compuserve in Germany into shutting down a web site of a critic of the sect. [That was Tilman Hausherr. Details at http://home.snafu.de/tilman/cos_fun/parody_images.html] The most delicate question in the discussion may not be the implementation as much as it is the "what" on the internet should be tolerated and what not; this in view of the fact that this is a worldwide network than moves through many cultural circles. That is primarily a political question. In the area of racism, the answer may well be the establishment of a minimum standard which would amount to a compromise between the more rigorous processes against racism in central Europe and the abstract liberal attitude of Anglo-Saxon influenced countries. There is already evidence that relatively wide agreement exists in the area of the fight against racism, which Switzerland also supports.
Compromises are necessary
If steps are to be taken against racism on the internet, then a combination of state measures and self-regulation will be necessary. In doing this, compromise is feasible and required: it would be possible, for instance, for U.S. internet access providers to see to it, without great technical demand, that providers of racist publications would be accessible only to a U.S. public. Access from Europe could be blocked using existing network technology, as is already being practiced in the ban on exporting cryptography. Naturally, such a blockage could be circumvented, but its effectiveness could well lie over 90 percent. Such a system could keep American providers from being criminally prosecuted overseas without freedom of speech, American style, being affected. Of course it should also be pointed out here that such blocking of access by foreign nations and other organizations could be misused if one were predisposed to do that. The evaluation of content, therefore, could be left up to an international committee which was subject to legal state control.
Another technical alternative which is under discussion, is a legally prescribed description of content. This is even legally feasible in the USA, since freedom of speech would not be restricted. The introduction of filters and blocks would be made very much simpler. The industry has already developed such systems for the description of content, but they are seldom used because there is no pressure from the state - another example of the necessity of cooperation between private industry and the state.
* The author of this article has written a working document for the combat of racism on the internet on commission of the UNO High Commission for Human Rights. It can be called up on the internet under www.rvo.ch/docs/unracism.pdf [the document is in the German language].