10.19.2005

L. Ron Humbug (The 'L' Stands for 'Litigation')



New Zealanders Test Scientology's Sense of Humor

from Defamer

The Church of Scientology has deployed its lawyers to stop the New Zealand website ScienTOMogy.info from confusing the net-surfing public into thinking that the CoS sponsors a site that prominently features Photoshopped images of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes in straightjackets, videos clips of Cruise electrocuting Oprah, and numerous disclaimers disavowing any connection to the CoS. From the Los Angeles Times:

The site states that it has no connection with the Church of Scientologists and offers a link to the Scientology home page. Then it post links to a series of videos of Cruise talking about Scientology, including a sci-fi video parody of the actor's infamous May television appearance on Oprah, in which he appears to electrocute her...

The creator of the website could not be reached by press time Tuesday. Church of Scientology attorney Helena Kobrin, a partner in Moxon & Kobrin law firm, said the letter was intended to protect the Scientology name.

"You can't use someone else's trademarks to promote your own agenda," Kobrin said, adding that organizations routinely defend the integrity of their trademarks and copyrights. "Changing one letter is the trick of the infringer to try to get around the law, but the law makes it very clear that you can't do that."


Indeed, we initially found ourselves very confused (and more than a little disappointed) upon visiting the site and finding absolutely no information about how to make a reservation for the Celebrity Centre’s famously delicious brunch. Bummer! And even though the site's clearly not a Church-approved re-seller of refurbished e-meters, it's not without potential value to Scientology. What could be a better recruitment tool than insinuating that spiritual seekers willing to join the CoS will gain the ability to kill Oprah with enchanted lightning?

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