Scientology in the Media [Internet]

A Documentary History of the Church of Scientology and the Net
Deana M. Holmes

[Part 4 of 10]

Usenet: alt.religion.scientology
April 1995

Main Index A.R.S. Web Summary Media

A Documentary History of the Church of Scientology and the Net
VERSION 1.0 / April 17, 1995
Compiled by Deana M. Holmes (

Compilation (c) 1995 by Deana M. Holmes.

The lawyers for Scientology went positively ballistic after this was posted. On February 27, Helena Kobrin sent a letter to Judge Whyte saying that Dennis was in violation of the temporary restraining order. Kobrin's letter follows.

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Kobrin jumps on an er 1/2
Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 19:41:46 -0800

Faithful Reader,

This letter was delivered, also to the wrong address, today to me
and the Judge.

Now I'm in for it.


                        HELENA K. KOBRIN

February 27, 1995

                       FAX AND U.S. MAIL

Hon.  Ronald M, Whyte
United States District Judge
United States District Court
Northern District of Californi
280 S. lst Street, #2112
San Jose California 95113-3008

Re:      Religious Technology Center, et al. v. Netcom Onlin
         Communication Services, Inc., et al,, No, C-95-2009

Dear Judge Whyte:

         As you currently have before you the question of the
scope of the preliminary injunction to be issued against Dennis
Erlich, we wish to bring to your attention what we believe to be
a clear and egregious violation of the temporary restraining
order by Mr. Erlich on Sunday, February 26, 1995.  We will be
submitting the appropriate application to address Erlichfs
contempt, but we fel this should be brought to your immediate
attention by this

         I am including with this letter a declaration by Warren
McShane regarding Mr. Erlichts, February 26 reposting of the
same Class VIII "Assists" tape transcript which is included as
one of the copyright and trade secrets violations of the works
of L. Ro Hubbard listed in Exhibit B to the complaint.  The
declaration details that the posting was the same as the
posting on which th complaint is based.  It consists of eight
pages out of a 25 page transcript, and also includes 19
additional lines of language from Advanced Technology
materials in a "glossary" that Mr. Erlich has included at the

         As discussed in the fair use briefings which we have
provided you, this extensive copying can in no way be deemed
fai use.  It is also egregious in light of your warnings to Mr.
Erlich at the hearing to be careful and not to engage in any
extensive ostin s and a flagrant violation of the Court's order.

         None of these things deterred him from this violation of
the temporary restraining order.  It therefore appears that
nothing short of a full ban on Mr. Erlich's postings of Church
materials pending the resolution of this lawsuit will deter him
from continuing his violations of RTC's rights, as he will
continue to claim ignorance and say he thought what he was
doing was permissible.

         We request that you take this violation into account in
deciding the scope of the preliminary injunction to be issued
an whether you will hold further oral argument on the subject.
In light of Mr. Erlich's, at best, deliberate decision to remain
ignorant of the law or, at worst, wilful violations of the law, it
seems appropriate to order that he may not post any of the
copyrighted materials during the pendency of the litigation.
RTC respectfully requests that the Court issue such an order
as part of the injunction.

       It should also be noted that Mr. Erlich has a copy of this
Advanced Technology material when it was impounded under
the Writ of Seizure.  His possession of this transcript itself
appears to violate the court's intentions.

         Respectfully Submitted,
         Helena Kobrin
         Counsel for Plaintiffs

cc: Randolf J. Rice, 
    Richard Allan Hornin, 
    Dennis Erlich, 
    Thomas M.Small
    Andrew Wilson

 [ Continued In Next Message... ]

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Kobrin jumps on an er 2/2
Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 19:41:47 -0800

 [ ...Continued From Previous Message ]


    Headed for the barry place.  This must be the sad and like 
    weepy part of the story.
          Rev. Dennis L Erlich   * * the inFormer * *
                        that person (tm)

Dennis wrote a letter apologizing to the judge for the incident, and admitting that the evidence may have been outside of the judge's amended TRO.

A copy of this letter was sent to CoS attorney Thomas Small, and near as can be made out, was passed to "Vera Wallace" in the Office of Special Affairs, the organization within the Church of Scientology that has been attempting to "handle" Dennis and the Net. "Vera" posted the following (I have censored out Dennis' addresses):

From: Vera Wallace <>
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Dennis Admits Infringement - Apologizes
Date: 1 Mar 1995 19:50:45 GMT
Message-ID: <3j2j6l$>

The following is a copy of the letter which Dennis Erlich sent to 
Judge Whyte after he posted more trade secret/copyrighted materials
on the ars newsgroup earlier this week. 

Dennis apologizes but his true color shows through when he says that
he will not post anything until such time as the judge has had time
to rule on the ownershipo of the material.  Dennis hasn't gotten the
message yet, there is no question about ownership Dennis, that was 
already decided in the Vien case. 

Here is the letter:

"February 27, 1995, 4:5 PM

"To:    Hon. Ronald Whyte
"From:   Dennis L. Erlich

"Re: C95-20091

"Your Honor,

"I just received your Amended TRO and I'm afraid that yesterday morning
prior to reading it, I may have violated the spirit, if not the letter,
of it.

"I have endeavored to undo the error by getting the offending post 
cancelled through Netcom.

"I would not have posted it if I had had your honor's amended order in 
my hand.  I will not post anything that might be questionable again 
until such time as your honor has had an opportunity to rule on 
ownership of the material.

"My correct mailing and residence address is XXX XXXXX XXX XXXXXXXX, 
XX  XXXXX.  Please do not mail to my place of employment (XXXX XX

"Once again, my apologies to the court and the plaintiffs for this


"Dennis L. Erlich
"in pro per

"cc: Thomas Small"

Dennis vehemently denied sending the letter to anyone besides the judge and Thomas Small.

(This has been edited to eliminate the original post by "Vera", which also contained Dennis' name and address.)

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Dennis admits in
Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 01 Mar 95 15:50:07 -0800

A Reader asks:

>     Did you post this letter publicly or give Vera permission to
>repost it?
>     [name deleted]


    I certainly did not give permission.  My enemies already
    know where I live and work.  Now so do my friends.      
          Rev. Dennis L Erlich   * * the inFormer * *
                        that person (tm)

Although Homer Wilson Smith has not been on the best of terms with Dennis, he was quite appalled by this and posted the following:

From: (Homer Wilson Smith)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Re: Dennis admits in
Date: 2 Mar 1995 03:15:31 GMT
Message-ID: <3j3d8j$>

     You mean to tell me that Vera posted a PRIVATE letter from you to
your attorney's, the Judge and the Church.  Didn't Small Larkin and
Kidde get on your case for posting their private letter to you?

     I suppose your letter is court record now, but indications are
that public record does not mean public domain.  On the other hand if
public record DOES mean public domain, then I say its time to post the
Fishman Affidavit, ALL of it.



This behaviour was par for the course for "Vera Wallace." At the same time she revealed the real name of "Deeny3," a former Scientologist posting from America On-Line. Maggie Council wrote the following criticism.

From: "M. Council" <>
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Credibility Tone Scale (was: Just the facts, ma'am)
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 12:09:51 -0500
Message-ID: <Pine.SUN.3.91.950228120302.979F-100000@luna>

On 27 Feb 1995, Vera Wallace wrote:

> (Deeny3) wrote:
> >
> > Hey, 1) I wasn't; 2) it couldn't have been your pay since YOU WEREN'T
> > THERE. Unless, of course, you're lying about your name. If I *was* guilty,
> > why wasn't I prosecuted Vera?
> Tubby, you are the one who is lying and you know it.  How about sending
> back what you stole from my pay checks. You admitted on more than one
> occasion that you stole the money.  You are lucky that you did not get
> prosecuted.  It does not change the fact that you ripped off the money
> and you probably enjoyed spending MY PAY at the trough.


Vera, take your transparent dead-agent campaign somewhere else. You came 
onto a.r.s. with absolutely no credibility. Now you have even less. You 
see, a.r.s. has this "Credibility Tone Scale," and right now you are 
operating at -3.0, 'Obvious Hogwash.' Your other posts have been -4.5, 
'Thinking Everyone Else Must Be Really Stupid' and -2.4, 'Parroting Idiocy.'

Is this your OSA "hat?"  To be the "bad cop?" Maybe you need to take 
advantage of the Celebrity Centre's free acting lessons...

You have no place here if you won't stay on topic. If you have private 
business with Deeny, conduct it in private e-mail.


Helena Kobrin also threatened Grady Ward and Martin Hunt on February 27th. (Nico Garcia had been threatened on the 14th.) Grady's response to Helena's letter follows.

Date: Mon, 27 Feb 1995 18:33:39 -0800
From: Grady Ward (
Newgroups:, alt.censorship,,
Subject: Re: Scientologist Demand Compliance

: Dear Mr. Ward:

:      I represent Religious Technology Center ("RTC"), the owner
: of the confidential Advanced Technology of the religion of
: Scientology, and the holder of exclusive rights under the
: copyrights applicable to the Advanced Technology materials. 
: Among these copyrighted and confidential materials are the
: Advanced Technology materials of certain levels known as
: "Operating Thetan Section III," "the L Rundowns The L-12 Rundown
: Step 6," and "NED for OTs Series 1."

:      We have been informed that you have posted 11 pages of
: "Operating Thetan Section III," 4 pages of "the L Rundowns The L-
: 12 Rundown Step 6," 3 pages of "NED for OT's Series 43," and 5
: pages of "NED for OTs Series 1" onto the Internet without the
: authorization of our client, who, of course, would not have given
: such authorization had it been requested.  Your action violates
: our client's legal rights in that it is the unauthorized making
: of electronic copies of the copyrighted material and the
: unauthorized disclosure of trade secrets materials.  

:      These actions constitute violations of the United States
: Copyright laws entitling our client to damages, an injunction,
: and impounding of materials and equipment used in perpetrating
: the infringing acts.  It is essential that you take immediate and
: effective action to remove the unauthorized copies from the
: Internet, and that you refrain from any repetition of this or
: similar acts in the future.

:      I will expect an immediate response from you with a
: statement of your willingness to comply with these demands.  If
: you do not comply immediately, I expect to be authorized to
: initiate legal action to compel compliance.

:                                Very truly yours,

:                                Helena K. Kobrin

Assuming this post is not a prank by some disturbed individual,
I am shocked that anyone would believe that I would infringe their
copyright under the US and Berne Copyright Convention.

You can be sure that I never have had infringing material in my
possession or transmitted the garbage you call your holy scrip.
If I did you can be sure that I would dispose of it in a way that
would express my disgust at your attempted trampling of the First
Amendment rights of the millions of people on Usenet internationally
and the continuing, possibly criminal, enterprise of Scientology and/or

I encourage all Usenet users to fully explore their rights under the
"fair use" doctrine of the US Copyright Law to expose the sham
enterprise known as "Scientology" and to assert their freedom to fairly
comment on an important public issue that, you, Helena Kobrin and
RTC Inc. have thrust into the vortex of public comment. 

Secondly I have heard reports that you, Helena Kobrin and RTC have
instituted the tactic of cancelling posts to Usenet by fraud. This
interference of data in interstate commerce is a violation of both state
and federal law and if substantiated will subject you and officers
of RTC to both civil and criminal damages, including civil forfeiture. 

Under RICO statutes, you may be liable for treble damages as well as
forfeiture of all assets used in such a continuing criminal enterprise.

I will expect an immediate response from you with a
statement of your willingness to comply with this demand.  If
you do not comply immediately, I  will file a complaint with
the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California State
Attorney General. Continued harassment may also be grounds for
dismissal from the California Bar. 

Lastly, since you are aware of the effectiveness of the cryptography
privacy and authentication program called PGP (telnet to
and use passowrd "getpgp" for more information) I have reason
to doubt that this unsigned PGP message is actually from Helena K.
Kolbrin, esq. Please register your key and sign your messages in the
future or use standard methods of legal service.

Grady Ward
3449 Martha Ct.
Arcata, CA  95521
+1 707 826 7715 (voice /24hr FAX)

I am all for religious freedom, including *my* religion, which includes
the sacrament of free speech.

Grady Ward  +1 707 826 7715 (voice / 24hr FAX)

Not long after that, Grady gave Helena Kobrin her characteristic nickname. This may be the first post in which Grady calls her the "'ho of babble-on".

From: (Grady Ward)
Subject: Re: Yow! Church of Scientology sues Erlich, Netcom,
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 2 Mar 1995 05:03:17 GMT

Luke St. John ( wrote:

: Dennis bit of more than he can chew.  But no one can help him chew it. 
: Dennis is dancing with the grizzly bear, he's stepped on his toes and 
: he's whacked at his nose and he's going to keep on dancing to see how it 

I think Dennis is doing the right thing. I don't think he bit off more
than he can chew.  I think Scientologists are a bunch of asswipes.

Look at Helena K. Kolbrin, the 'ho of babble-on, she threatened to
get medieval on my ass.  All I got to say to her is: "I dare you.
I DOUBLE dare you, daddyfucker!"

Grady Ward  +1 707 826 7715 (voice / 24hr FAX)


At the same time "David Talbot" (a Scientology operative posting on a.r.s) revealed that he had contacted Grady regarding a newspaper article. Grady responded:

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
From: (Grady Ward)
Subject: Re: Scientology's history of harassing writers of books
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 2 Mar 1995 06:39:04 GMT "David Talbot" writes:

: > Are you the same Grady Ward that is involved with some legal trouble
: > concerning postings of secret manuals of a government agency?
: > I read some articles in the papers some time ago. 

So YOU were the one who called me about the Cleveland Plain-Dealer clipping.

Is this the Scientologists best effort at ad hominem? You guys are
pathetic!  People have solemnly warned me about the Scientology
Intelligence Organization. What a bunch of cretinous asswipes.

I'm sure if you work hard you can dig up more interesting shit than that,
you lick-spittle morons.

Grady Ward  +1 707 826 7715 (voice / 24hr FAX)


On a lighter note, Koos Nolst Trenite, a former member of the CoS who now channels L. Ron Hubbard, won Usenet Kook of the Month for February. He wrote a very gracious response (which unfortunately I do not have), thanking everyone for making him famous in this lifetime. If only the CoS could be as gracious.

After the raid on Dennis, it became clear that the tactic posted by Wonderfulr on January 28th was coming true. The newsgroup was flooded with posts by Scientologists. At first, the dead agenting was done by "known" Scientologists, such as Jack Farmer, but not long after the raid on Dennis, other, unknown Scientologists came online.

"milne" (probably Andrew Milne, an OSA operative) showed up for the first time on February 26th. At first milne attempted to respond to other posters, but his answers were a mixture of dead-agenting and downright evasion. He then moved to so-called "FAQS Regarding Misconceptions about Scientology." The following is one of those FAQS, along with responses.

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: FAQS(1)
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 13:36:59 -0500
Message-ID: <>

      RE: FAQS Regarding Misconceptions about Scientology
      As numerous misconceptions about Scientology have been
      posted to this newsgroup, questions and answers are
      provided here to give readers correct information about
            The battle with the Internal Revenue Service was
      finally and favorably resolved on October 1, 1993.  On that
      day, the IRS issued letters recognizing the Church of
      Scientology International and its related churches and
      organizations -- all 150 of them -- as tax-exempt under
      section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code.
            This ruling marked the end of a 40-year war between the
      Church and the IRS.  The IRS's determination followed the
      most intensive scrutiny in the agency's history of any
      organization applying for tax exemption and included a
      meticulous review of Church activities and financial records.
      During this examination, an enormous amount of false
      information that IRS officials had been operating on in
      relation to the Church was addressed and corrected.  Once the
      facts were established, the IRS came to the only possible
            - The religion of Scientology is a bona fide religion;
            - Churches of Scientology and their related charitable
      and educational institutions are operated exclusively for
      recognized religious purposes;
            - Churches of Scientology and their related charitable
      and educational institutions operate for the benefit of the
      public interest rather than for the interests of private
            - No part of the net earnings of churches of
      Scientology and their related charitable and educational
      institutions inures for the benefit of any individual or
      noncharitable entity.
            - The Churches of Scientology do not violate any public

From: (UNIXer)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Re: FAQS(1)
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 05:07:48 GMT
Organization: the Home of the DC-8 leaving Teegeeack
Approved: By The RTC <tm>
Message-ID: <3iub34$>

In article <>, wrote: 
>      RE: FAQS Regarding Misconceptions about Scientology

Translation : FAQS creating Misconsceptions about Scientology
>      As numerous misconceptions about Scientology have been
>      posted to this newsgroup, questions and answers are
>      provided here to give readers correct information about
>      Scientology.

Which I will happily translate here, from the Scientologiese into that 
which us lay people call, humbly, the truth :)

Yep. (See one word answer, works great, saves band width and makes it 
easy on the eyes... and I didn't even take the Communications Course!)
>            The battle with the Internal Revenue Service was
>      finally and favorably resolved on October 1, 1993.  On that

Favorably to whom?

>      day, the IRS issued letters recognizing the Church of
>      Scientology International and its related churches and
>      organizations -- all 150 of them -- as tax-exempt under

150 organizations for a church!?  Doesn't this strike ANYONE as odd?  
A church with 150 front organizations... can you say RICO?

>      section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code.

Making them ONLY a tax exempt organization, an IRA is a tax exempt 
organization of sorts.  This means nothing more.  The IRS does NOT 
recongize the Cof$ as a Church, only as a tax exempt organiztion.  And 
even then the rules are very complicated.
>            This ruling marked the end of a 40-year war between the
>      Church and the IRS.  The IRS's determination followed the

Hardly, the case is still in a very real position of being reopened.

>      most intensive scrutiny in the agency's history of any
>      organization applying for tax exemption and included a
>      meticulous review of Church activities and financial records.

Not True, the IRS did not scrutinize the records very well at all.  
This is supported by the much larger activities the IRS spends on RICO 
cases, and the like.  Which, IMHO, the Cof$ deserves.  Nevertheless, 
the IRS did not spend much effort on these guys, they gave up.

>      During this examination, an enormous amount of false
>      information that IRS officials had been operating on in
>      relation to the Church was addressed and corrected.  Once the
>      facts were established, the IRS came to the only possible
>      conclusion:
>            - The religion of Scientology is a bona fide religion;

The IRS does NOT certify religions, it makes NO determination as to 
the bona fideness of religions.  This is a patent lie on the Cof$'s 
>            - Churches of Scientology and their related charitable
>      and educational institutions are operated exclusively for
>      recognized religious purposes;

That is, the Cof$ would not disclose what those puposes are, under 
it's first amendment rights, and the IRS had no choice but to let it 
go at that.

>            - Churches of Scientology and their related charitable
>      and educational institutions operate for the benefit of the
>      public interest rather than for the interests of private
>      individuals;

The IRS did NOT say this, nor state anything like it, the Cof$ makes 
this claim.
>            - No part of the net earnings of churches of
>      Scientology and their related charitable and educational
>      institutions inures for the benefit of any individual or
>      noncharitable entity.

That is, members of the Cof$ are classified under tax laws as 
Independent from the Church, and are payed pennies.  The RTC is NOT 
considered part of the church, and monies, as well as benefits to it 
are not included in it's tax records.  The entire system of payment 
dispursions is quite a racket, the profits are transfered thru Author 
Services which IS a for-profit organization.
>            - The Churches of Scientology do not violate any public
>      policy.

Just kidnapping, brain washing, evading the law, evading just service 
of papers, tax evasion, illegal search and seizure, destruction of 
electronic communications, attempted murder, fraud, infiltrating 
government agencies, obstruction of justice, and other nice things 
CHURCHS don't do.

|UNIXer| *+* In all the world, I marvel at all the people that argue 
                to remain ignorant.  All the while ranting on about 
                        how much they know, and shaking thier blinders
                                at me chanting, I can see so much 
                                        better now that I'm focused!
                                                Take off your blinders
                                                        you fool. I'm


On March 1, 1995, milne began flooding a.r.s with posts concerning the alleged perfidies of CAN (the Cult Awareness Network). Here's one of the shortest ones.

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Date: Wed, 1 Mar 95 18:02:31 -0500
Message-ID: <>

Cult Awareness Network has provided unqualified, tainted "testimony" from
false experts intended solely to poison judges and juries into adopting
their own witch-hunting mentality.


On March 2nd, Tilman Hausherr, an a.r.s reader from Germany, posted the news that the CoS in Hamburg would now be treated as a business, not a religion by the CoS. Since then, Tilman has provided translations of articles in the German press that refer to Scientology.

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
From: (Tilman Hausherr)
Subject: NEWFLASH: Co$ loss in german court
Date: Thu, 2 Mar 1995 19:20:07 +0000
Message-ID: <>

this one just in, from the ENS service of CompuServe. I hope this
is "fair use".
(dpa) The controversial Scientology organisation has to register
its activities as a commercial business. The administrative
federal court in Berlin confirmed rulings of the Hamburg superior
administrative court. (...) The 11-year dispute between the
"Scientology Church Hamburg" and two [Hamburg] districts is now
finally ruled.
(Ref: BVerwg 1 B 205 und 206.93 vom 16. Februar 1995)
According to the ruling of July 1993, Scientology has to register
its sale of books and courses as a commercial business. (...) With
those activities, Scientology is participating in the business
world for the purpose of monetary gain, even if they call it "an
element of religious practice".
Scientology tries to picture itself as a religious community. The
conference of the interior ministers has called that organisation
a white-collar-crime community.
BTW, there is a difference between the US and the German legal system.
In germany, the loser usually pays all. This means that Co$ not only
pays its own costs, the costs of the court, but also the costs of
the Hamburg districts. <g>
This case will set a precedent for other cities, and I hope they
will use it against Co$. Interesting is that the court did not rule
on the topic "Scientology as a religion".

--- Tilman Hausherr          [KoX, 1.9, DB]
business (optical archives 'n stuff):
private  (magic, Co$, MWC, skeptic,...):

Q: Why does my brain smell soapy ?
A: You're a Scientologist [tm] and just had auditing.


In the first part of March, the CoS also posted the declaration of Rosa Erlich, the former wife of Dennis. It was a sad, pathetic document, which had nothing to do with the court case at hand and was an attempt to dead-agent Dennis some more by alleging that he was a terrible, wicked father. Many people on a.r.s thought this declaration was dirty pool on the part of the CoS.

"Brian Stone," another CoS operative, came on a.r.s early in March. He quickly made his mark by flooding a.r.s with posts. On March 7, for example, he posted 23 posts, half of which consisted of testimonials of the "Narconon" "anti-drug" program" and assertions that the CoS was a religion. The other half consisted of dead-agenting of Germany, Cynthia Kisser, CAN and Priscilla Coates. The following is a "Brian Stone" post which was apparently a freeform response to something Daniel Davidson had written.

"Brian" later progressed to printing excerpts from testimony of scholars who had been paid to testify on behalf of the CoS. I was so informed that this was the case by the wife of one of the scholars who was so cited by "Brian Stone".

From: (Brian Stone)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Re: CAN & the Crutch of $cientology...
Date: 7 Mar 1995 00:04:52 -0800
Message-ID: <3jh434$>

Daniel Davidson ( wrote:
: I'd never heard of CAN until I started reading this group....
: The more the Church of Scientology spams CAN, the more I *like* CAN.

Who's this deadhead?    So it's okay for you to have free speach but when 
someone else uses that freedom, you can't handle that, can you?  Anyone 
who likes a bunch of criminal's who can come up with nothing better to do 
with their lives than kidnap their relatives to prevent them from 
practicing FREEDOM OF RELIGION, deserves them.  Go put your head back 
into the sand that it came out of.



On March 9, 1995, Neal L. Barry of Delta Internet Services announced that he had kicked off two users, "the saint" and "leevy" after complaints that they had been cancelling messages in a.r.s . His post follows.

From: (Neal L. Barry)
Subject: Re: Cancelbunny #5 has arrived, from
Date: 9 Mar 1995 02:35:02 GMT
Message-ID: <3jlpgm$ikc@alterdial.UU.NET>

In article <>, (Ron Newman) says:
>The Cancelbunny has finally figured out that Netcom is no longer
>a friendly home for net-abusers.  (Cancelbunny #4,
>"", lasted less than a day before Netcom
>suspended her access.)

Forged Message Cancel to alt.religion.scientology

We have identified the individual who was posting forged 
message cancels from to 
alt.religion.scientology. He and his compatriot's account 
has been terminated.

There were actually two individuals, "thesaint" and "leevy",
and they both signed-up together. In retrospect, our 
dealings with them were suspicious. They arrived at our 
offices at around 8:00PM and insisted in signing up right 
away as they had to attend to some ‘important’ business. 
They paid in cash. They had driven over 2 hours to our 
offices to get this accomplished so we felt obliged to setup 
their accounts right away.

We first received e-mail regarding forged message cancels 
coming from our site ( around the first of 
March. After much investigation and helpful suggestions by 
alt.religion.scientology participants as to the possible 
culprit, the offender was identified.

One of the major clues was that ‘thesaint’ had recently been 
making numerous posts to alt.religion.scientology and these 
were the first posts made to that group from

We found undeniable incriminating materials in both 
individual's directories, including message cancel 
templates, numerous lengthy transcripts of court cases 
relating to scientology, and other items best not disclosed 

Because we are not certain if the names, addresses, or 
phone numbers that they gave are legitimate we will not 
disclose them in this post.

Neal L. Barry                        Delta Internet Services                


On March 9, Tom Klemesrud posted six declarations from so-called experts with regards to how Netcom and could make sure that the CoS copyright documents could be kept from the Net. The following, by Rachel Kadel, is a critique of one of the declarations.

From: (Rachel Kadel)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Re: Castleman declaration
Date: 10 Mar 1995 02:10:07 GMT
Message-ID: <3jocdv$>

In article <>,
 <> wrote:
>This message is being sent via E-mail to Cornell University, where
>it is processed for posting to Usenet.
>                            DECLARATION OF KENNETH R. CASTLEMAN
>       I, Kenneth R. Castleman, hereby declare:
["I'm such a computer wizard,"  "How to Log On to a BBS" snipped]

>       29.    With respect to the question of what steps may be taken by
>Klemesrud to deal with a subscriber to his system who is making improper
>or illegal postings, Klemesrud's TBBS system easily permits him to take
>such actions.
>       30.    Klemesrud can easily remove a person from his system by
>disabling the person's password and user account.  He can also limit a
>person's access to BBS functions by permitting the person only access of
>a certain level, as described in paragraph 13 above.  This means of
>controlling use could include limiting a person's access so he cannot
>access Usenet newsgroups or denying him posting privileges, which is
>consistent with paragraphs 18 and 19 of his declaration.
True.  (He *could* do that to someone for any reason or no reason -- or 
not.  It's his computer.)

>       31.    Klemesrud also has the ability to eliminate a newsgroup
>which is objectionable in some way, including too many postings of
>copyrighted materials in violation of an owner's rights, as his
>declaration admits in paragraph 33, 36.
Also true.  (Or he could quit carrying a newsgroup because it's silly and 
pointless, or he doesn't have the disk space, or it has bad propagation 
and isn't getting any posts anyway . . . )  He doesn't have to stop 
carrying a newsgroup because people on it sometimes violate copyrights -- 
if you can justify shutting down a.r.s. for copyright reasons, you can 
justify shutting down the whole usenet for copyright reasons.  I don't 
think that proves anything.

>       32.    Also, on the Internet, there has developed a set of
>unwritten rules or standards of behavior, which most users agree should
>be followed.  These rules are referred to as "Netiquette." Per
>Netiquette, Klemesrud, as a BBS operator, has the responsibility for
>preventing illegal postings or those which violate copyrights or other
>rights by his subscribers.  If someone engages in such a posting, per
>Netiquette, the BBS operator should first notify the person, then
>warn the person, threatening to cut him of f , and finally actually cut
>the person of f if he does not stop his objectionable postings.
"Objectionable" can be variously defined.  Telling someone to stop 
posting on-topic material to because such things are 
"objectionable" would be horrendous nettiquette.  So would telling 
someone that they couldn't post anything anywhere because their limited 
quoting had aroused the wrath of the Church of Scientology.

>       33.    Mr. Klemesrud himself has such rules posted in writing on
>his BBS.  His rules prohibit "Personal attacks, harassment, threats,
>racial slurs/comments, lewd messages etc.," as well as uploading of
>"bombs, viruses, etc." or "copyrighted/pirated software," which are
>described as federal offenses.  

Dennis's posts have been none of the above.

One remedy listed for violations is
>"dismissal of the perpetrator from the board." (Ex.  B, Rules and
>Regulations of Los Angeles Valley College BBS No. 1 and 2.) Another rule
>is that "Message writing privileges to public forums will only be
>allowed after a donation is received, and the Sysop is satisfied that
>the User will not break these rules, and/or all applicable laws." 
Good policy.  'Twould be good if AOL adopted a similar one . . . 

>1 12.) By his own rules, Mr. Klemesrud should be removing Mr. Erlich
>from his BBS or at least removing his message writing privileges, as Mr.
>Erlich is both violating the BBS's rules and causing it to violate the
>rules of its access providers# thereby jeopardizing Los Angeles Valley
>College BBS, Netcom and the entire Internet community.
The sysop, as far as I know, is satisfied that the user is *not* breaking 
his rules or the law.  It is conceivable, though unlikely, that the court 
will find that the sysop's satisfaction is unwarranted.  However, the 
sysop is *not* a law enforcement agency.

>       34.    If a BBS operator does not deal with such problems with
>his subscribers, the systems operator up the line from him, who is
>providing him access to the Internet (in this case, Netcom) then has a
>misbehaving subscriber, and should take measures to deal with its
"Should."  Yea, should.  The CoS "should" not be such a bunch of ...

Sorry, I'll try that one again.  *If* the BBS is abusing its connection 
in such a way as to harm the 'net, the upstream site may take it upon 
itself to cut off the bbs for the good of the net.  If the abuse is 
sufficiently disruptive of the functioning of the net, there may be a 
good deal of pressure on the upstream site to cut off the BBS.  This is 
not altruism or enforcement of external law on the net's part: it's 
self-preservation.  It's the responsibility of sysadmins to keep the net 
running; it's not their responsibility to enforce the law.

>       35.    In practice, systems operators do take such actions when
>necessary to prevent copyright infringement, defamation, pornography, or
>other postings on their systems which are illegal or tortious or
>otherwise objectionable.  

In practice, I have heard of *users* being removed for the abovementioned 
reasons.  I haven't heard of *sites* being cut off for those reasons.  
Spamming, yes.  Copyright infringement, no.

With all the valuable uses to which the
>Internet can be put, it is important that systems operators engage in
>such voluntary actions to discourage and prevent violations of legal
>rights.  Any ethical systems operator does take such actions.  In
>fact, most bulletin board systems operators post policy bulletins for
>the board which establish rules for acceptable behavior, with the
>warning that those who violate those rules will lose their
Ok, that's cool -- although actually *why* bbses have policies has more 
to do with keeping the boards usable than with keeping the users within 
the law.  But, true, an ethical sysadmin, when confronted with a clear 
violation of the law, will try to shut it down.

>       36.    I am informed that Netcom has argued that it could not
>monitor postings by an individual because it would not be able to tell
>what is copyrighted and what is not.  This misses the point entirely.
>As a matter of practice, systems operators are not a judge or jury, and
>need not make such evaluations.

Excuse me, please.  How, pray tell, are they supposed to prevent posting 
of copyrighted material *without* making such evaluations?  

  They respond when they receive
>complaints.  If a user's actions are generating complaints, they should
>act and regularly do act.  The operator of a system sets the rules f or
>use of that system.  It is his right to do so, and if users violate
>those rules and will not cease doing so, they are disconnected as a
>routine matter of practice on ethically run BBSes.
Ahem.  If an ethical sysop receives complaints about a user's actions, 
the sysop will then examine the user's behaviour in light of the 
complaint and make a determination as to whether or not the user is in 
violation of the rules of the board.  If *a complaint*, regardless of 
merit, were sufficient to kick someone off a board, guess what?  Helena 
Kobrin would no longer have a netcom account.  (Whether, on the basis of 
the attempted rmgroup of alt.religion.scientology, she *should* have her 
account revoked is another question.  The fact is that her account has 
generated complaints.)  

>       37.    Mr. Klemesrud has a business relationship with Netcom,
>requiring him to follow certain express written terms and conditions.
>Mr. Erlich's actions are jeopardizing that business relationship in that
>they are causing Mr. Klemesrud to violate those terms and conditions and
>expose him to liability or disconnection, as described in the next
>paragraph.  In such a circumstance, it is routine practice for a BBS
>operator to cut off one of his users.
Neither netcom nor Klemesrud has advanced the opinion that Ehrlich's 
actions were in violation of their policies.  To the best of their 
knowledge, and to the best of mine, no copyright violation occurred.

>       38.    A copy of Netcom's Terms and Conditions, available from a
>Guest log-on is attached hereto as Exhibit C. Netcom itself, in
>paragraph 2.2 of the Terms and Conditions prohibits posting of
>copyrighted materials.  Paragraph 7.3 of the Terms & Conditions provides
>that it is unethical and possibly criminal to violate "any of the NETCOM
>conditions of use." It further states that users are expected to report
>violations, which will be investigated and the "account in question" may
>be suspended in the interim "to prevent further possible unauthorized
>activity." Eventual account cancellation or criminal prosecution for
>illegal acts may also result.
All fine and dandy:  if netcom believed that was responsible 
for copyright violations, they could at their discretion suspend 
service.  But, it has not been proven that said copyright violations 

>       39.    Just as Klemesrud has means for dealing with Erlich
>directly, Netcom could deal with Klemesrud or with Erlich if it decided
>to do so, to stop serious abuse of its facilities.
>       40.    I am informed that Netcom's equipment includes a Sun
>workstation running the UNIX operating system software.  In such a
>system there are several programs (called "daemons") that run
>continuously in the background, operating independently of the rest of
>the software.  These programs handle specific functions, such as routing
>email and Usenet news postings.
>       41.    Any site running the UNIX operating system software on its
>computer, whether NETCOM or another of the millions of UNIX systems in
>existence, can obtain and modify these programs for its own needs, and
>use them to handle the mail and news passing through its system
>in any way desired.  For example, one simple modification would be to
>have the software compare the To: and/or From: addresses of each message
>against a stored list of blocked sources and destinations and delete any
>message that produced a match.  This check would likely take only a few
>milliseconds per message.  In this way, Netcom could isolate messages
>which are from Erlich, to a.r.s.. or both and could block them from
>proceeding through its system, return them, or take other action with
>respect to them.
BUT -- Netcom would then be restricting legal speech.  That could, in 
itself, be a breach of contract, and if that action were forced on them 
by the government, would be illegal prior restraint of speech.

>       42.    Netcom's arguments that its system "cannot" deal with the
>problem are misleading.  While it may be that the mail and news handling
>software, as currently configured, is not set up to perform these
>filtering functions, Netcom could make the relatively minor
>modifications needed to permit filtering of the mail and news traffic in
>a variety of ways, including source and destination blocking.
I don't know about the feasability of the abovementioned bot.  I do know 
that it would be unreasonable to the point of impossibility to inspect 
every post going through netcom for copyright violation.  Why should 
Dennis' posts be subjected to scrutiny, or, worse, out-of-hand 
censorship, simply because he is *accused*?

>       I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United
>States of America that the foregoing is true and correct.
Except for the minor point of a good deal of it being misleading and wrong.

>       Executed on the 7th day of March 1995 at Clearwater, FL
>                                            /s/ KENNETH R. CASTLEMAN

Why are you quantizing my cookies?
Rachel Meredith Kadel or, for the adventurously inclined, Bean-na-Sidhe

====================Deana M. Holmes================================ Compiler of History of a.r.s ==
========You can get anything you want at Xenu's Restaurant=========
================Practicing encheferation since 1995================