Judge Whyte and the Internet

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Charlie Jernigan

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
to
Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
editorial about the judge's view of the law.

David Brower

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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Charlie Jernigan <Charlie_...@gbop.org> writes:

>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>editorial about the judge's view of the law.

Specifically, "Judge Whyte, in short, has turnbed copyright law on its
head. The purpose of the law is to encourage free speech, giving
authors and artists comfort in knoweing that others cannot
misappropriate their works for their own profit.. The essence of the
matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian literalness
can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an
already dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt
power - a threat to freedom of speech well recognized in the First
Amendment Community."

Delightful to see mainstream attention to this in a way that actually
notices the key issues.

-dB


--
"It's hard to find a black cat in a dark room. | David Brower
Especially if the cat's not there. | dbr...@oracle.com
But we will!" | da...@acm.org

Edward E. Rigdon

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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David Brower wrote in message ...

>Charlie Jernigan <Charlie_...@gbop.org> writes:
>
>>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
>
I really like the language in this editorial. After describing, in brief,
the Klemesrud, Erlich, Ward and Henson actions, the editorial warns of the
broader issues:

"The Scientologists are merely doing their thing, but both cyberlitigants
and First Amendment vigilantes ought to take a close look at Judge Whyte's
reasoning."

Geoffrey V. Bronner

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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All I can say is... "ouch."

The Journal can really write a touch editorial when they put their minds to it.

-Geoff
--
Internet Systems Developer / Administrator
The Amos Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College
<http://www.dartmouth.edu/~geoffb/>

Scully3428

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
to
>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>editorial about the judge's view of the law.

Can someone find a free copy of this article online somewhere? In order to get
it at the WSJ site you need a subscription to the online service. Thanks.


Lori Ann Chauvette (SP4) *** Scul...@yahoo.com *** Lori Ann's Own Little Play
Place -- http://members.aol.com/scully3428/index.htm
With New Sections on "Scream", "South Park", and Move Reviews!
Coming Soon: Analyzing Scientology

Dave Bird---St Hippo of Augustine

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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In article <dbrower.901043543@senna>,
David Brower <dbr...@us.oracle.com> writes:

>Charlie Jernigan <Charlie_...@gbop.org> writes:
>
>>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
>
>Specifically, "Judge Whyte, in short, has turnbed copyright law on its
>head. The purpose of the law is to encourage free speech, giving
>authors and artists comfort in knoweing that others cannot
>misappropriate their works for their own profit.. The essence of the
>matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian literalness
>can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
>critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an
>already dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt
>power - a threat to freedom of speech well recognized in the First
>Amendment Community."

Do they mean Henson, or is this another case before Judge Shyte?

|~/ |~/
~~|;'^';-._.-;'^';-._.-;'^';-._.-;'^';-._.-;||';-._.-;'^';||_.-;'^'0-|~~
P | Woof Woof, Glug Glug ||____________|| 0 | P
O | Who Drowned the Judge's Dog? | . . . . . . . '----. 0 | O
O | answers on *---|_______________ @__o0 | O
L |{a href="news:alt.religion.scientology"}{/a}_____________|/_______| L
and{a href="http://www.xemu.demon.co.uk/clam/lynx/q0.html"}{/a}XemuSP4(:)


Arbe

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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In article <199807212247...@ladder01.news.aol.com>,
scull...@aol.com (Scully3428) wrote:

<+>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
<+>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
<+
<+Can someone find a free copy of this article online somewhere? In order
to get
<+it at the WSJ site you need a subscription to the online service. Thanks.
<+
=

**** WHY DO YOU THINK THE WSJ WANTS YOU TO PAY FOR THE ARTICLE?

For someone to provide a verbatim free copy of the entire copyrighted
newspaper article could be construed as a copyright violation unless
permission was granted, etc. Considering that the article **is about
copyright** violations and the judges opinions, I suspect no one wants to
open up that can of worms..

****

--
--ARBE-- Remove arbe from e-mail
-- INAL- Damages limited to what you paid me for my opinion --

David Brower

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
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Dave Bird---St Hippo of Augustine <da...@xemu.demon.co.uk> writes:
>In article <dbrower.901043543@senna>,
>David Brower <dbr...@us.oracle.com> writes:
>>Charlie Jernigan <Charlie_...@gbop.org> writes:
>>
>>>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>>>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
>>
>>Specifically, "Judge Whyte, in short, has turnbed copyright law on its
>>head. The purpose of the law is to encourage free speech, giving
>>authors and artists comfort in knoweing that others cannot
>>misappropriate their works for their own profit.. The essence of the
>>matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian literalness
>>can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
>>critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an
>>already dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt
>>power - a threat to freedom of speech well recognized in the First
>>Amendment Community."

>Do they mean Henson, or is this another case before Judge Shyte?

Yes, it very explicitly talks about Erlich, Ward and Henson's cases.
I chose not to quote more out of deference to "fair use". Perhaps
someone else has time to paraphrase the entire piece.

Martin Hunt

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Jul 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/21/98
to
In article <35B4B7...@gbop.org>,
Charlie Jernigan <Charlie_...@gbop.org> wrote:

>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>editorial about the judge's view of the law.

On-line? Posted?

--
Cogito, ergo sum.
Banned terms in Scientology's Net Nanny for OTs (NNOTs) censorware:
MARTINHUNT
NCF.CARLETON.CA
ISLANDNET.COM
Scientologists are not allowed to read my posts or visit my webpages.
Find out more of what the cult is trying to hide at:
http://www.ncf.carleton.ca/~av282/

Just Wog

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
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On 21 Jul 1998 22:47:23 GMT, scull...@aol.com (Scully3428) wrote:

>>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
>

>Can someone find a free copy of this article online somewhere? In order to get

>it at the WSJ site you need a subscription to the online service. Thanks.
>

Here ya go. Bob

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Internet Czar?

Which judge is going to run the Internet? Stanley Sporkin made a stab early
on in the Microsoft antitrust case, before an appeals panel removed him.
Thomas Penfield Jackson has now assumed that gavel, but so far has had
important decisions twice shot down on appeal. With would-be Beltway czars
faltering, maybe we should glance toward Silicon Valley, covered by the U.S.
District Court in San Jose. There you will meet Judge Ronald Whyte.

Last October Judge Whyte was assigned a case with the pregnant title of Sun
Microsystems Inc. v. Microsoft Corp. In contrast with Justice Department
fantasies about browser predation, Sun's case has a certain basic
plausibility. It alleges that Microsoft abused its licenses fooling around
with Sun's Java scripting language; Java is intended to work interchangeably
on different operating systems, but Microsoft came up with a mutant that
works better on Microsoft's Windows. While "merely" a contract case, the
outcome may determine Internet language standards, and even more importantly,
the rules of cross-licensing on which computer technology ultimately depends.

So putative Czar Whyte's jurisprudence is of some real consequence. As it
happens, he already busily if quietly has been establishing cyberlaw,
handling a succession of cases concerning the Internet and the crucial
question of copyright. The cases arise from the efforts of the Church of
Scientology to keep its secret but copyrighted scriptures from being put on
the Internet by defected members and their newfound cyberfriends.

In 1996, the Church of Scientology sued Tom Klemesrud, the systems operator
of a bulletin board, and Netcom, his Internet service provider, for copyright
infringement. Both cases eventually were settled. Mr. Klemesrud agreed to
pay the church $50,000 to go away, but admitted no liability. Netcom agreed
to establish new protocol for handling disputes in which copyright holders
claimed infringement, but were unwilling to display the originals for
comparison with posted material.

Some similarly situated individuals, however, are still in Judge Whyte's
court. Portions of secret Scientology texts have been popping up anonymously
in many Internet discussion groups for some years, and in 1994
ex-Scientologist Dennis Erlich attached his name to one of the postings and
promptly was sued by his former brethren for copyright infringement and
misappropriating trade secrets. Eighteen months later, Grady Ward, a virulent
critic of the church, also was sued in connection with the posted texts. Both
suits are pending in Judge Whyte's court.

In 1996, Keith Henson, an electrical engineer, found himself before Judge
Whyte; he'd posted church script on the Internet in anger over the discovery
that Scientologists were trying to muzzle cybercritics by erasing internet
discussion groups. Mr. Henson bravely but no doubt unwisely chose to
represent himself in court. Judge Whyte ruled on infringement as a matter of
law, and found Mr. Henson guilty without a jury trial. The judge then
convened a jury on the question of damages, and the Scientologists won
$75,000, which their lawyers believe to be the largest copyright infringement
statutory damage award ever recorded for a single infringement.

In addition, Mr. Henson faces a possible jail sentence for contempt of court.
He also posted a transcript of his own trial that included the sacrosanct
material. Mr. Henson said he did not know the computer diskette he received
included the material, but Judge Whyte found him in contempt, and reserved
judgment on the penalty. He has, however, enjoined the defendant from
publishing a register of other web sites where Scientology scripture can
already be found. Mr. Henson has finally retained counsel from an lawyer who
has opposed the Scientologists in other cases, and plans to appeal the
decisions.

The Scientologists are merely doing their thing, but both cyberlitigants and
First Amendment vigilantes ought to take a close look at Judge Whyte's

reasoning. Mr. Henson is not trying to steal the profits from Scientology
scriptures; his motive is to criticize what he believes is a corrupt and
dangerous organization that practices coercive mind control and engages in
medical quackery, in the process bilking vulnerable individuals for thousands
of dollars and endangering their health. While admitting that the documents
were copyrighted, he felt his postings would be covered under as "fair
comment and criticism," a long-standing provision of copyright law.

This, Judge Whyte held, didn't even require a jury to deliberate on Mr.
Henson's motives. For one thing, his postings didn't include enough explicit
criticism of the material, since he felt it was preposterous on its face.
More basically, the judge found, the "fair use" doctrine in its application
is much stronger for already published material, and of course the posted
scriptures had not been published by the owners of the copyright. You can
criticize the texts of a public religion, that is, but a secret religion is
immune.

Judge Whyte, in short, has turned copyright law on its head. The purpose of

the law is to encourage free speech, giving authors and artists comfort in

knowing that others cannot misappropriate their works for their own profit.

The essence of the matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian
literalness can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an already

dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt power--a threat
to freedom of speech well recognized in the First Amendment community.

Now, we have a certain sympathy for Judge Whyte, rooted in the feeling that
the internet copyright issue is too important to be fought out over secret
scriptures and pro se defendants. Maybe Judge Whyte could figure out how to
send all such cases across the country to Judge Sporkin. All the same, the
third would-be Czar is off on no better foot than the first two--a bad omen
for Sun v. Microsoft, for internet law and for free speech.

(Copyright Wall Street Journal, 7.21.98)


Scully3428

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
> For someone to provide a verbatim free copy of the entire copyrighted
>newspaper article could be construed as a copyright violation unless
>permission was granted, etc. Considering that the article **is about
>copyright** violations and the judges opinions, I suspect no one wants to
>open up that can of worms..

I'm not saying post the article in the group....I mean if someone knows of
another site that has a copy of the article legally that can be viewed by those
of us who can't afford the $48 subscription fee. I'm sorry if it got
misinterpreted that way.

Zane Thomas

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
On Tue, 21 Jul 1998 23:46:25 GMT, wog_...@geocities.com (Just Wog)
wrote:

>The cases arise from the efforts of the Church of
>Scientology to keep its secret but copyrighted scriptures from being put on

^^^^^^


>the Internet by defected members and their newfound cyberfriends.

They misspelled "once-secret".

Zane Thomas

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
On Tue, 21 Jul 1998 23:46:25 GMT, wog_...@geocities.com (Just Wog)
wrote:

> a corrupt and

>dangerous organization that practices coercive mind control and engages in
>medical quackery, in the process bilking vulnerable individuals for thousands
>of dollars and endangering their health

Looks like the WSJ has grokked $cumitology's true nature.

Jim Hoagland

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
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On Wed, 22 Jul 1998 00:16:59 GMT, wog_...@geocities.com (Just Wog)
wrote:

>On 21 Jul 1998 22:47:23 GMT, scull...@aol.com (Scully3428) wrote:


>
>>>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
>>>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
>>
>>Can someone find a free copy of this article online somewhere? In order to get
>>it at the WSJ site you need a subscription to the online service. Thanks.
>>
>
>Here ya go. Bob
>
>---------------------------------------------------------------------------

---------------------------------------------------------
.........quoting WSJ:
>Internet Czar?
<big snip>


>Judge Whyte, in short, has turned copyright law on its head. The purpose of
>the law is to encourage free speech, giving authors and artists comfort in
>knowing that others cannot misappropriate their works for their own profit.
>The essence of the matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian

--------------???

>literalness can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
>critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an already
>dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt power--a threat
>to freedom of speech well recognized in the First Amendment community.

.........Unquote WSJ
<another snip>


>(Copyright Wall Street Journal, 7.21.98)

"pecksniff" ??? :

Well...being relatively ignorant, I had to look it up...
http://www.daimi.aau.dk/~lynbech/roget/entries/548.html
it was definitely worth the effort ...... ROFL!

JH


Anonymous

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to

> >>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
> >>editorial about the judge's view of the law.

> Judge Whyte, in short, has turned copyright law on its head. The purpose of

> the law is to encourage free speech, giving authors and artists comfort in
> knowing that others cannot misappropriate their works for their own profit.
> The essence of the matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian

> literalness can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
> critics. In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an already
> dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt power--a threat
> to freedom of speech well recognized in the First Amendment community.

> (Wall Street Journal, 7.21.98)

What did I say about the good judge being ignorant of the larger Order of
which he is a part? Or the bright spotlight scrutinizing his rulings in
this seminal internet case, in which he shouldn't for his own good just be
lazy to achieve reduction in courtroom bother?

This is the man who has invited the Judge Whyte Roster of people who die
due to enjoined cult medical malpractice protected by his shortcut
copyright rulings. When a major beneficiary of the copyright laws weighs
against him, you know he's been played for the fool.

I think when the appeals court considers the fundamental systemic
requirement of respect for the judiciary system, if not justice itself, it
will reverse Whyte. Unless he reconsiders, within his discretion, whether
these cases should even continue when plaintiff's counsel (a) assaults and
harasses deponents and (b) flouts the discovery process.

Wouldn't Whyte be better off on appeal if he dismisses Henson and Ward,
without abusing his discretion, than if he goes before the appeals court
with the notion that exposure of crime is not fair use?

I expect the Order will weigh in on all this, regardless of Whyte's
decisions. I just wish he would work and think harder, and not piss off so
many of us smart types who generate growth in his backyard and whose
respect for the judicial system he should help earn.


Keith Henson

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
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Anonymous (nob...@REPLAY.COM) wrote:

: > >>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering


: > >>editorial about the judge's view of the law.

snip

: What did I say about the good judge being ignorant of the larger Order of


: which he is a part? Or the bright spotlight scrutinizing his rulings in
: this seminal internet case, in which he shouldn't for his own good just be
: lazy to achieve reduction in courtroom bother?

Hard to say what you said with all the anons around :-). But I can't
blame you, I would have had a much less "interesting time" over the last
few years if I had posted anon.

: This is the man who has invited the Judge Whyte Roster of people who die


: due to enjoined cult medical malpractice protected by his shortcut
: copyright rulings. When a major beneficiary of the copyright laws weighs
: against him, you know he's been played for the fool.

: I think when the appeals court considers the fundamental systemic
: requirement of respect for the judiciary system, if not justice itself, it
: will reverse Whyte. Unless he reconsiders, within his discretion, whether
: these cases should even continue when plaintiff's counsel (a) assaults and
: harasses deponents and (b) flouts the discovery process.

Serious as they are, these are minor matters compared to RTC's other
activities against me. Consider the LA cases--where (except for Bob
Minton's timely intervention) RTC almost managed to use the state legal
system to have me doing hard time in the local lockup.

: Wouldn't Whyte be better off on appeal if he dismisses Henson and Ward,


: without abusing his discretion, than if he goes before the appeals court
: with the notion that exposure of crime is not fair use?

It would be out of character for Judge Whyte to reconsider his view on the
relative importance of copyright protection vs exposing medical fraud . .
. . but I would guess the lead editorial in the WSJ would do it if
anything could. There are motions before him he could act on--but it
would be better from a legal standpoint for the 9th Circuit to do it.

: I expect the Order will weigh in on all this, regardless of Whyte's


: decisions. I just wish he would work and think harder, and not piss off so
: many of us smart types who generate growth in his backyard and whose
: respect for the judicial system he should help earn.

I don't think you can fault Judge Whyte for not working hard or thinking
hard. The problem (from my worms eye view) is that he tends to ignore the
constitutional context of what copyright law is for (surely not shielding
criminal activity from exposure) and (I think) he is overly influenced by
high priced scientology lawyers. I am personally not all that annoyed with
him-- though my wife (who is working 14 hour days because of my case) is.

Judge Whyte is starting to get some understanding of social dynamics on
the net. He indicated in the last hearing (wish I had the $100-150 to buy
the transcript and post it) that he understood that the more fuss you make
trying to get something off the net, the worse off you are if you are if
you want to keep it secret. (Rough paraphrase.)

Along this line, Judge Whyte has been playing an important supporting role
in scientology's monumental operation foot-bullet. My case (and Ward's
and Erlich's) in his court have led to this truly fine WSJ editorial. I
don't think *any* amount of money spent on PR would have had the negative
effect on CoS of this lead editorial in the WSJ. Perhaps it will lead to
someone--perhaps even me--suing the IRS under the establishment clause
over the IRS *overruling* what the Supreme Court said in *Hernandez* by
issuing Revenue Ruling 93-73 and cause scientology to lose non-profit
status. It might even be seen as the beginning of the end for the evil
and dangerous organization that is scientology.

In this light, we should appreciate Judge Whyte.

Keith Henson

PS, and the WSJ, which also exposed the IRS deal with scientology.

PPS, I probably should not exercise my free speach on this topic at all
since the clams will no doubt claim this respectful posting to be an
example of my disrespect for the court.

PPS http://www.law.emory.edu/ELJ/volumes/sum96/alison.html

Anonymous

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
In article <hkhensonE...@netcom.com>, hkhe...@netcom.com (Keith
Henson) wrote:

> PPS, I probably should not exercise my free speach on this topic at all
> since the clams will no doubt claim this respectful posting to be an
> example of my disrespect for the court.

Hot Dog! That means Scientologists would be also be filing with the Court
my criticism of them, as quoted by you! Would that up my SP rating?


Keith Henson

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
Anonymous (nob...@REPLAY.COM) wrote:
: In article <hkhensonE...@netcom.com>, hkhe...@netcom.com (Keith
: Henson) wrote:

No doubt. <grin> But how will the awards comittee know which anon to
give it to? Keith Henson

Sandy Kear

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to

>You can
>criticize the texts of a public religion, that is, but a secret religion is
>immune.

I liked this assessment of the proceedings. :-)

Sandy

Keith Henson

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Jul 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/22/98
to
Just Wog (wog_...@geocities.com) wrote:

: On 21 Jul 1998 22:47:23 GMT, scull...@aol.com (Scully3428) wrote:

: >>Today's Wall Street Journal (21Jul98) has a not too flattering
: >>editorial about the judge's view of the law.
: >
: >Can someone find a free copy of this article online somewhere? In order to get
: >it at the WSJ site you need a subscription to the online service. Thanks.

: Here ya go. Bob

: ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
: Internet Czar?

snip

: So putative Czar Whyte's jurisprudence is of some real consequence. As it

: happens, he already busily if quietly has been establishing cyberlaw,
: handling a succession of cases concerning the Internet and the crucial
: question of copyright. The cases arise from the efforts of the Church of
: Scientology to keep its secret but copyrighted scriptures from being put on
: the Internet by defected members and their newfound cyberfriends.

: In 1996, the Church of Scientology sued Tom Klemesrud, the systems operator
: of a bulletin board, and Netcom, his Internet service provider, for copyright
: infringement. Both cases eventually were settled. Mr. Klemesrud agreed to
: pay the church $50,000 to go away, but admitted no liability.

More accurately, Tom's insurance company, facing the mad dog litigation of
scientology, paid RTC 50k to let them off the hook. In a lot of books
this would be considered blackmail.


Netcom agreed
: to establish new protocol for handling disputes in which copyright holders
: claimed infringement, but were unwilling to display the originals for
: comparison with posted material.

And as far as I know, the details of the settlement with Netcom have
never come out. Unlikely as it may be, it could be that scn's get to
look through all Netcom's customer files. (The fact I am still on Netcom
gives you a hint that I don't believe this, but the argement is still
secret.)

: Some similarly situated individuals, however, are still in Judge Whyte's

: court. Portions of secret Scientology texts have been popping up anonymously
: in many Internet discussion groups for some years, and in 1994
: ex-Scientologist Dennis Erlich attached his name to one of the postings and
: promptly was sued by his former brethren for copyright infringement and
: misappropriating trade secrets.

For quoting material posted by someone else.

Eighteen months later, Grady Ward, a virulent
: critic of the church, also was sued in connection with the posted texts. Both
: suits are pending in Judge Whyte's court.

: In 1996, Keith Henson, an electrical engineer, found himself before Judge
: Whyte; he'd posted church script on the Internet in anger over the discovery
: that Scientologists were trying to muzzle cybercritics by erasing internet
: discussion groups.

In the context of a letter to Judge Whyte about the effects his TRO on
the Ward case would have to stifle critics.

Mr. Henson bravely but no doubt unwisely chose to
: represent himself in court.

There was little "choice" involved. I simply did not have the money to
pay for legal help. I *borrowed* the tiny amount I paid for Graham Berry
to represent me at the last moment.

Judge Whyte ruled on infringement as a matter of
: law, and found Mr. Henson guilty without a jury trial. The judge then
: convened a jury on the question of damages, and the Scientologists won
: $75,000, which their lawyers believe to be the largest copyright infringement
: statutory damage award ever recorded for a single infringement.

: In addition, Mr. Henson faces a possible jail sentence for contempt of court.
: He also posted a transcript of his own trial that included the sacrosanct
: material. Mr. Henson said he did not know the computer diskette he received
: included the material, but Judge Whyte found him in contempt, and reserved
: judgment on the penalty.

At least Judge Whyte has not ruled that I know about.



He has, however, enjoined the defendant from
: publishing a register of other web sites where Scientology scripture can
: already be found.

I don't think this is true . . . . but I am not sure.

Mr. Henson has finally retained counsel from an lawyer who
: has opposed the Scientologists in other cases, and plans to appeal the
: decisions.

Graham Berry at the last moment.

There are actually two appeals active at the moment. One I filed last
year over the summary judgment, and one I filed after the trial. On the
first one, the 9th Circuit has indicated it is considering oral argument.

I can't afford counsel for either one.

: The Scientologists are merely doing their thing, but both cyberlitigants and

: First Amendment vigilantes ought to take a close look at Judge Whyte's
: reasoning. Mr. Henson is not trying to steal the profits from Scientology
: scriptures; his motive is to criticize what he believes is

a corrupt and
: dangerous organization that practices coercive mind control and engages in
: medical quackery, in the process bilking vulnerable individuals for thousands
: of dollars and endangering their health.

I don't think anyone has put the core arguments in such a compact form.

While admitting that the documents
: were copyrighted, he felt his postings would be covered under as "fair
: comment and criticism," a long-standing provision of copyright law.

: This, Judge Whyte held, didn't even require a jury to deliberate on Mr.
: Henson's motives. For one thing, his postings didn't include enough explicit
: criticism of the material, since he felt it was preposterous on its face.

By word or character count, my letter was almost the same length as the
material I was commenting on.

: More basically, the judge found, the "fair use" doctrine in its application

: is much stronger for already published material, and of course the posted
: scriptures had not been published by the owners of the copyright. You can
: criticize the texts of a public religion, that is, but a secret religion is
: immune.

Not just secret religions. If Judge Whyte's ruling stands, the tobacco
industry can make exactly the same claims about their material, get it all
sealed, and sue the people who exposed their internal activities such as
marketing to "the younger segment of the population."

: Judge Whyte, in short, has turned copyright law on its head. The purpose of

: the law is to encourage free speech, giving authors and artists comfort in
: knowing that others cannot misappropriate their works for their own profit.
: The essence of the matter before him, as anyone not blinded by a Pecksniffian
: literalness can see, is that the plaintiffs are using the law to muzzle their
: critics.

Which is *exactly* what my original letter to Judge Whyte was about.
(Had to look that one up.)

In addition, the judge is in the process of morphing an already
: dubious tort case into a criminal matter through the contempt power--a threat
: to freedom of speech well recognized in the First Amendment community.

I have to admit it was my error for posting the sealed hearing part. Even
having a lawyer did not help, because Graham says the customs are
different in the Central district and he did not know that the reporter
would put sealed material on an disk with no warning about the contents.
Such I found out is the local custom--though this case may have changed
the custom.

: Now, we have a certain sympathy for Judge Whyte, rooted in the feeling that

: the internet copyright issue is too important to be fought out over secret
: scriptures and pro se defendants.

I am not a pro se defendant by choice. Maybe someone could point the
ACLU my direction?

Maybe Judge Whyte could figure out how to
: send all such cases across the country to Judge Sporkin. All the same, the
: third would-be Czar is off on no better foot than the first two--a bad omen
: for Sun v. Microsoft, for internet law and for free speech.

I wonder how many extra copies of the WSJ this one sold? :-) I bought
several myself. It has a fine engraving of Judge Whyte from a photograph.

: (Copyright Wall Street Journal, 7.21.98)

A great job fellows! (Now if they only don't sue me :-) )

Keith Henson

Tom Klemesrud

unread,
Jul 24, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/24/98
to
Keith Henson (hkhe...@netcom.com) wrote:

[...]

: And as far as I know, the details of the settlement with Netcom have

: never come out. Unlikely as it may be, it could be that scn's get to
: look through all Netcom's customer files. (The fact I am still on Netcom
: gives you a hint that I don't believe this, but the argement is still
: secret.)

In discovery, it was apparently required of Netcom, to release to the
Scientologists, my internet password, and credit card information. The
Judge had no reservations about obliterating my privacy rights--but is
considering throwing you in jail for merely posting a transcript of your
court case, given to you by the Judge's clerk, that--because of the
Court's administrative error--contained material that has been splattered
all over the internet for years; but Judge Whyte thinks is sacrosanct.

Tom Klemesrud SP6
KoX

Jeffrey L. Bell

unread,
Jul 24, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/24/98
to
Tom Klemesrud <tom...@netcom.com> wrote:
>...

>In discovery, it was apparently required of Netcom, to release to the
>Scientologists, my internet password, and credit card information....

It's poor security if they keep a plaintext of your password.

Any system worth it's salt (ahem) will just keep a one-way encrypted
version, and the only way to get at the original is to guess
passwords. (of course many people use passwords that are in the dictionary)

Is there any way to find out what they released?

-Jeff

ExScio

unread,
Jul 24, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/24/98
to
> > I really like the language in this editorial. After
> > describing, in brief, the Klemesrud, Erlich, Ward and
> > Henson actions, the editorial warns of the broader issues:
>
> > "The Scientologists are merely doing their thing, but both
> > cyberlitigants and First Amendment vigilantes ought to take
> > a close look at Judge Whyte's reasoning."


Hopefully this is picked up by some of the U.S. Representatives
working on copyright issues. They need to realize that
leaving "Fair Use" as a vague concept for the courts to
decide is an unfair burden on us all. And Judge Whyte
expemlifies just how UNfair it is to let people like him be
in charge of deciding for the rest of us what we can or
can't say or do with a copyrighted work in the course of
free speech.


<<<<< ExScio (with the emphasis on EX) - St. Louis area SP >>>>>

Feadog

unread,
Jul 24, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/24/98
to
Rev Dennis Erlich <info...@informer.org> wrote in article
> ...property rights always trump civil rights in the
> United States. Always have.

Not in New Jersey. Just ask Vera Coking; she kicked Donald Trump and the
state of NJ in the butt when they tried to get her property for a new
casino/condo. Court decision denied the use of emminent domain to take her
property; believe they argued that it was a violation of her civil rights.

See; we are making a little progress.

Feadog
--
Critical Scientology Links:
http://www.xenu.net/, http://www.lisamcpherson.org
Boston Herald - Series on Scientology; March 1998 (link may expire soon):
http://www.bostonherald.com/scientology/


Starshadow

unread,
Jul 26, 1998, 3:00:00 AM7/26/98
to
In article <01bdb739$45bd61a0$c414...@kellar.navsses.dt.navy.mil>,
fea...@snip.net says...

> Rev Dennis Erlich <info...@informer.org> wrote in article
> > ...property rights always trump civil rights in the
> > United States. Always have.
>
> Not in New Jersey. Just ask Vera Coking; she kicked Donald Trump and the
> state of NJ in the butt when they tried to get her property for a new
> casino/condo. Court decision denied the use of emminent domain to take her
> property; believe they argued that it was a violation of her civil rights.
>
> See; we are making a little progress.
>

Damn little, if you ask me. My son in law and my older granddaughter
are both Indians (legally, though they are other cultures as well, both
of 'em), and I have long been aware that Indians, in the United States,
have been treated variously as cultural icons, as national resources, as
national treasures, as freeloaders who weren't using that land anyway
(per John Wayne before his death among others), and as pesky natives that
the gov't would rather up and died so we could all remember them as
"noble redmen(and women)" but as anything but people.

I have a button that says "Sure you can trust the government. Just ask
an Indian or a whale."

And I am watching the courts screw Henson and Grady, among others...

Pisses me off.

--
Bright Blessings,


Starshadow SP4, Granny Dyke

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