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Newsletter June 2002

FACTNet Newsletter
FACTNet, Inc.-Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network

Protecting freedom of mind by exposing cults and mind control...
because only you have the right to control your mind.


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June, 2002


FACTNet News Opinion/Editorial 6/26/02

Activists

Many and various people have asked us how they can assist FACTNet.

FACTNet has always been of the opinion that each subscriber to the FACTNet Newsletter, or donor, is an activist. Each subscriber has his or her own specific talents. How each individual can help would necessitate a customized answer.

An overview: 
FACTNet belongs to a community of organizations that are concerned with systemic abuse in religious organizations, sects and cults. We assist them. They assist us. The FACTNet Newsletter subscribers are FACTNet's eyes and ears. The FACTNet Newsletter subscribers number in the thousands and are the "neighborhood watch" that monitors the news and their local communities.

In the past they used to send all their information to FACTNet e-mail address. The expansion of the Newsletter community and the larger volume of information made it logistically impossible for FACTNet to follow up on each lead we received.

We, therefore, created a discussion board at http://www.factnet.org/discus/ where people can leave their information for the staff at FACTNet and the general public to see. This has proved to be a remarkable success and data found in the discussion board is often updated within hours of news being released by larger news agencies.

Nevertheless, the most encouraging sign we have seen regarding the maturation of the FACTNet activist community is that people have started to act in an independent fashion:

  1. When they have the skills, people put up websites relating to their particular concerns and specialization.

  2. People have created their own informal newsletter groups amongst their friends and relay news that they find on FACTNet or relay the FACTNet newsletters themselves.

  3. People have collected e-mail addresses of all the Newspapers, Radio Stations, TV Stations and news-oriented websites and are feeding news-related articles to the media when they feel that the issues that concern the community are not being covered.

  4. People have shared the knowledge that they find amongst other like-minded websites. i.e. They have shared the news that they find with websites that don't have the resources to keep up with the news. (This is more important than people realize. The whole idea is to create a shared knowledge database so that information is spread across the Internet and redundancy is achieved.)

  5. When people have the skills, they "mirror" FACTNet (and other websites that give permission) or download and archive websites with good data so that if websites go down, as often occurs, then data can be recovered and shared once again.

  6. Those that have translation skills volunteer their services to FACTNet and like-minded websites (or set up their own non-English websites). [Right now there is an urgent need for translation into African languages where there has been a rise cult-like religious activity.]

  7. Those that have specialist knowledge like lawyers, accountants and Internet technology are stepping forward and analyzing the activities of organizations that are seen as problematic. They are then presenting the data in a fashion that is intelligible to the layperson.

  8. People are talking to their political representatives and sending data to government watchdog organizations.

  9. Some people help repair hyperlinks

  10. (And, lest we forget, those people who just don't have the time but do have the financial means, make donations to FACTNet and other like-minded non-profit organizations)

We could continue with examples, but the above should give the reader a broad overview of how people are getting involved in a very constructive and direct way in the issues of the day. FACTNet is proud to be a part of this community.

For the readers that are skeptical, or afraid to get involved, we do understand. It is very difficult for people who have been in autocratic, patriarchal or coercive societies or organizations to move beyond their basic fears. We hope that you find the courage to speak up. The Internet is fast becoming the new democratic forum that is leveling the playing field. Where people can have a voice that is heard around the world.

Recent examples of cases where FACTNet, as part of the community, were able to affect real changes are:

Our Newsletter: 4 Dec 2001 "John Walker: American Indoctrinated with Cult Mind Control Techniques by Taliban" 
( http://www.factnet.org/alt_religion_scientology/FACTNetARS20011204.txt )
Contributed to this result: 5 Dec 2001 TIME Magazine - Did John Walker Join a Cult? 
( http://www.time.com/time/columnist/reaves/article/0,9565,187206,00.html )

Our Newsletter: 21 Nov 2001 "Is Earthlink promoting the Church of Scientology in spite of its denials of involvement with the cult?"
( http://www.factnet.org/alt_religion_scientology/FACTNetARS20011221.txt )
Contributed to this result: 25 Jan 2002 "Earthlink no longer promoting Scientology?"
( http://www.factnet.org/alt_religion_scientology/FACTNetARS20020125.txt )

Our Newsletter: 21 Mar 2002 "Is Google in the censorship business?"
( http://www.factnet.org/alt_religion_scientology/FACTNetARS20020321.txt )
Contributed to this result: 12 April 2002 "Google Begins Making DMCA Takedowns Public"
( http://www.linuxjournal.com/article.php?sid=5997 )

Our Newsletter: 2 April 2002 "Cultic ritual child murders: England + South Africa"
( http://www.factnet.org/alt_religion_scientology/FACTNetARS20020402a.txt )
Contributed to this result: 20 April 2002 "Mandela appeals for aid in murder inquiry"
( http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,687587,00.html )

None of the above could have been achieved without the active participation of the FACTNet newsletter subscribers. There are also a multitude of smaller achievements by FACTNet and associates that are never made public. For example: Guiding people who need legal or counseling assistance to reputable sources, empowering other sister organizations with technical and moral support and, researching and adding religious organizations that need to be watched to the FACTNet website at the request of FACTNet subscribers.

All of which is done on a shoestring budget...

The non-profit organization, FACTNet, is one of the key hubs of activism on the issues of mind control and cults in the world today. It acts as a stable clearinghouse for information, activism and people surrounding these issues. It has survived more than 9 years on the Net through false copyright raids, covert operations to destroy it, and a plethora of other activities by some of the most powerful cults and organizations in the world. All in attempts to silence its voice. None of which have ever been successful! 

In spite of continuous threat and efforts to silence FACTNet's voice, it continues to be one of the most courageous and outspoken of voices via its editorials and other website tools designed to monitor breaking news and issues! Come to our home page if you have not been there for a while and see for yourself. 

Last month FACTNet went through its largest surge of use ever with an estimated 3 million plus hits. Our normal use is about 1 million hits a month. FACTNet handled this surge with the same number of staff and the same procedures but stretched its finances to the breaking point.

One reason for the surge of hits at FACTNet was the FACTNet exclusive on Lawrence Wollersheim ( http://www.factnet.org/letters/FACTNewsMay2002Wollersheim.html) who was paid over almost 9 million dollars by Scientology to end a 22-year legal battle. Lawrence Wollersheim has pledged to assist FACTNet with annual matching donations of up to 24% of FACTNet's total donations when he gets his money out of the court. This will only be in about 3 -12 months from now. In the meantime, FACTNet must survive as it continues to grow each month.

By US non-profit law no one individual may donate more than 24% of the total donations received annually to a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization or that non-profit will lose its non-profit status and be treated as a private foundation. This helps keep non-profit organizations funded and guided by a broad numbers of supporters. (Which has been the FACTNet model all the years of its existence.)

Now an opportunity and challenge exists for FACTNet's future. The challenge is that FACTNet critically and immediately needs more users to make donations so that it can survive its growth and remain a stable hub of activism on the relevant issues. The opportunity is that the more that FACTNet gets form its broad donor base, the more that Lawrence Wollersheim will match in annual donations. 

FACTNet's operations account and reserve bank balances are critically low due to the increased service demands. So, if you're a user of FACTNet that has never donated before, then please try and find the resources to do so now. If you're an old donor then please try and bump up your donations for a while so that we can take advantage of Lawrence Wollersheim's offer, but remember that it may take months before he has his money out of the court to help.

For those of you that truly cannot afford anything at the moment, keep up the good work. FACTNet still needs your efforts.

At this point we would like to thank Tom Padgett for coming through on a pledge he made many years ago, after using the FACTNet resources to help him prepare for his battle with Scientology. He said that he would pledge 10% of any refund he obtains from Scientology. He has now lived up to his promise and donated $200 to FACTNet. Even though he is also in need of moral and financial support for his ongoing legal battles. See: http://www.madvillelaw.net/

We trust that you will respond quickly to this critical, and tax-deductible, donation request to help keep FACTNet's activism and information online and serving the world community. We are simply not able to continue without this urgent financial assistance. 

Sincerely,
The FACTNet Editorial Team

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This editorial/opinion/news alert has been provided or distributed by FACTNet, Inc. (Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network.) Since 1993 we have been the largest online news and referral service as well as research archive for defending freedom of thought and mind from all forms of unethical influence tactics, mind control and mental coercion/torture used in destructive cults and fundamentalist groups. FACTNet is a tax deductible, IRS Approved 501(c)(3) non profit organization.
 
 For breaking news, personal stories, recovery information, support groups, expert referrals, message boards, newsletters and books relating to destructive cults and fundamentalism, mind control, mental coercion and unethical psychological influence, please visit our web site at http://www.factnet.org  If you would like to comment on this editorial/opinion/news or to share your personal experiences, go to one of our many various message boards at http://www.factnet.org/discus/ .
 
 Re-distribution and re-posting of this document using proper net etiquette when doing so, is appreciated!
 
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