netwarsTitle: net.wars

Author: Wendy M Grossman

ISBN: 0814731031

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This is a classic book about the Internet, describing the early conflicts between the practice of freedom of speech and information, and the vested interests who have tried to control online discourse.

It is relevant here because of  one chapter (of 20 pages) which describes the conflict between people discussing Scientology on the newsgroup alt.religion.scientology and the Church of Scientology, who used both legal and extra-legal means to try to suppress not only discussion but also the free exchange of Church materials which they did not did not want to be freely available.

Chapter 6, “Copyright Terrorists” reveals that the freedom of information and anonymous communication enabled by the  Internet has, from its earliest earliest days, proved highly disruptive to the Church of Scientology (and any other repressive organisation that depends on Secrecy).