Anonymous on Trial

Word comes down that a New Jersey teen is facing trial for the DOS attacks on Scientology’s computer’s at the beginning of the Anonymous campaign earlier in the year.

A teenager who took part in a distributed denial of service attack against the so-called church of Scientology has been charged

Dmitriy Guzner, 18, of Verona, New Jersey, is charged with helping in the attack on Scientologist servers in January. He has agreed to plead guilty to a single felony charge of unauthorized impairment of a protected computer and pay $37,500 in damages.

As I said in my first video to Anonymous, this is not a game.  Scientology is serious and they want to tie people up in court.   You need to be aware of this.  One may fall and ten will rise sounds good unless you are that one, like Dmitriy, facing years in jail.

The Justice Department has said that Guzner will be put on trial in the coming weeks and could face up to ten years in prison. 

Anonymous as struck a mighty blow against Scientology’s fraud and abuse throughout this year but it’s good to remember that using legal means to educate the public and dry up Scientology’s raw meat is the smart way to go.

I’ll do a video this weekend on this and other subjects.  I have no answers but I don’t want to see more Anons facing Dmitriy’s dilemma.

Wired Article

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16 Comments on “Anonymous on Trial”

  1. Chris Peterson Says:

    I think that as a whole, Scientology has been very effective on keeping it’s critics on the defensive. We feel compelled to over react to this news because, ironically, it’s the only really concrete thing they have to say in the past 8 months.

    But I’m going to be honest. These DDoS were the sparks that started Project Chanology. This is a fact. And as with anything with Anonymous, anyone and everyone who is willing is invited; do as you please as it were. It sounds like, with almost anything, this kid got involved with the wave of DDoS basically because it sounded ‘cool’ and didn’t know what he was doing. The weakest link, Scientology’s target. He broke the law, and no one will deny that he should take responsibility. But this whole thing is heavy handed and anyone with eyes can see that; motivated not by the degree of the crime, but by the prize and personal satisfaction in the punishment.

    I find it hilarious that so many people are willing to exaggerate something they don’t understand. DDoSing is not ‘hacking’. It does not invade upon privacy. It’s nothing more than being obnoxious. And if you want to critize it for being obnoxious, then fine.

    But it was not arbitrarily so. These DDoS were in reaction to something; censorship, to which people of the Internet generation are typically and naturally vehemently opposed. And even if it may be hard to understand why something as silly as the litigious and heavy handed reaction by the Co$ to one leaked Tom Cruise video would be the spark for people to rise in action, it’s as simple as viewing the perfectly public, completely open forums from which these action spawned to see that there is nothing more to it.

    Immediately, I can already sense the condescension in what many adult readers will have at this point. “Ah hah! So you are saying Anonymous is nothing more than obnoxious bored destructive teenagers!”

    It doesn’t matter. Anonymous doesn’t matter. It’s a joke, and the joke’s on you if you think that somehow, what Anonymous is or what the motivations of particular people involved in Project Chanology (the protests against Scientology) are is important. The only thing important is the message: Scientology is dangerous. It doesn’t matter who or what carries it.

    Freedom is the ability to do something without approval or justification, even when conventional wisdom says that it is “wrong”, and even when there is a good chance that it will be “wrong”. Law then is what sets the consequences for making choices against what has been decided as “wrong” for the stability of society.

    And yet Freedom and Law are both important aspects modern Democratic Culture. Karmatic forces of black and white, as it were.

    Best wishes to the poor kid who was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

  2. Leannekera Says:

    Quoted { Immediately, I can already sense the condescension in what many adult readers will have at this point. “Ah hah! So you are saying Anonymous is nothing more than obnoxious bored destructive teenagers!” }

    Anonymous is a worldwide organisation and all members are individual. You can not point aggressively towards this one person and number each other member the same.

    Anonymous all act differently but hold the same passion.

    This ‘Attack’ on Scientology was at the birth of Anonymous’s campaign… Errors have been made by the eager few but never encouraged by the whole group. To me this was a jump to impress at the start but not something Anonymous would bother to do now as Anonymous have other ways to get the message across to the people in need. This is shown by the now dwindling numbers in CoS each month.

    As Anonymous grew so did its range of age groups, its perception of Scientology and its passion to peacefully protest and be rid of this cult for good.

    Mark I look forward to your video.

  3. Chris Peterson Says:

    Leannekera,

    I understand what you are saying, and you are right in some sense, but I sense rationalization in your post that does not reflect an understanding as deep of Anonymous as you may think. Which is understandable; the ‘fantasy’, the ‘mystery’, and the ‘joke’ of Anonymous has been lost on the large audience of people. Which has been largely the point, I would wager.

    Take a step back. What if I told you that there /are/ people in Anonymous who don’t think the DDoS attacks were wrong? And that they continue to contribute enormously to these protests? That they are often, in my experience, the ones who keep things light hearted and fun enough to keep morale high? Just because peaceful demonstrations have been widely adopted in Project Chanology doesn’t mean that you should isolate, divide, and abandon the actions of an individual who, in fact, largely acted in the same emotional fury and with the same node of approval of Project Chanology and its members. You are right; what one person does certainly does not reflect on the entirity of Project Chanology, but I challenge you that you are out of touch to think that these actions are as widely and largely ‘condemned’ as you suggest.

    Wether or not the DDoS was a mistake, to me, is hard to really judge. I think that law enforcement and judges should apply the law impartially, but I do not grant them the blessing of my moral agreement in doing so. DDoS is ethically equivalent to messing with the Dean’s keys so he can’t get into his office because you think he’s been an unfair restrictive dick. Imagine such a similar scene straight from an 80’s “Buehler’s Day Off” or “National Lampoon” movie. The overall damage that it does is mostly to someone’s inflated ego, and even if the motives are partly for the fun of directly annoying someone who is largely disliked, it is still a reflection of the feeling of that group on a whole.

    My point to you Leannekera is this: Anonymous is not a ‘group’ with ‘members’. It’s a joke. A meme. And it has /alot/ of interpetations, held by and used by /alot/ of people with different cultural identities. I think that your attempts to describe your generalized blanket perception of Anonymous and to subtly condemn the actions on behalf of the entirity of Anonymous is being defensive about a non-issue at heart. You assume that if, somehow, these actions do reflect a strong contingent within Anonymous, that it would somehow mean that Scientology is right all along. And that’s what Scientology wants you to think and feel; that your actions and message about Scientology hinge upon something so off target and irrelevant as this.

    Taking anonymous seriously will always leave you disappointed. It isn’t your friend. Your friends are your friends, and they may be members of Anonymous. But quickly will you find yourself alienating and dividing Anonymous by speaking for it without a touch of irony, satire, and compromise for the undeniable power of self-pointed humor. The definition of Project Chanology and its particular flavor of Anonymous is the emergent action on the powerful message that Scientology is dangerous, and that it must be dealt with because it is not welcome in its present form.

  4. Leannekera Says:

    Hi Chris, surprisingly I fully agree with what you have said.

    …But just like Scientology you will get the good and the bad in any group. That’s nothing new.

    The side to Anonymous that I have been subject to is far from what Scientologists will have you believe and a long way off the DDos attackers Anonymous have been categorized as from the start.

    The people I have spoken to care implicitly for the members trapped in this cult and are doing all they can to help.

    Yes there are the few that are using anonymous to rid there teenage like angst… but (and with a huge thanks to Mark) this is now very few and far between.

    More and more people are seeking protest with masks and pickets as they have come to learn strong actions against Scientology only prevent the right message getting across.

    I support the protesters who hand out valentines cards on February the 14th with wishes of good will and helpful website links for the in need to turn to. I support the protesters who wake up at the crack of dawn to hand out fliers each month to members of the public to help make them aware of Narconon and the other ways Scientology pray on the ill and weak. I support people like my partner who is a criminal defense solicitor and works with the mentally ill every day, who will go out of his way each week to make sure all courts are free from Narconon fliers.

    I do not support any direct attacks as I feel they do not help, they only give Anonymous a bad reputation and I know many others who feel the same.

    Thanks for this Chris, its nice to speak to someone as open minded as yourself.

  5. Eric Says:

    My 2 cents here is to put up a paypal donation link to help pay for a great lawyer to keep this kid out of jail. I would donate toward freeing someone who threw a DOS at the church of fruit cakes.

  6. XENU TV Says:

    Just remember that Ferris Buehler or Bluto Blutarsky won’t have to pay a $35,000 fine and spend ten years in jail but an Anonymous member won’t be so lucky. No writer is scripting a happy ending to this lark.

  7. 3rdMan Says:

    The joke of anonymous and the cause we’re involved in attracts all kinds of people from all walks of life. Even those who have to rationalize the culture as an actual organization, every pedestrian I have spoken to during the protest seems to think that. But, its not anonymous vs. Scientology. Its really the people vs. Scientology. It started wit the internet, then escalated to all kinds of folk.

    Anonymous is just ruse you might say. People need a name to go with our voice, so they get the name of everyone as incognito: Anonymous. A joke within itself, if you think about it. It takes away Scientology’s ability to attack us in its usual manner, and at the same time makes it difficult for us to be hurt because everyone likes to think of organizations as a hierarchy structure with rules and all that other fetish. Organizations can be sued, injuctioned, arrested wholly, etc…

    Can’t do that to Anonymous because we have none of that! LULZ! No bureaucratic BS, just people united by ideas and who don’t take themselves seriously enough to care if people say bad things to them (example: We wear ridiculous disguises in public). How can hurt a guy without a face, when you don’t know who he/she is?

    So if “Anonymous” is made up of good and bad; here is an interesting question: How bad does Scientology have to be that even the “bad guys” of the internet want to take them down?

    …oh yeah, and too bad about the Jersey guy. But I agree with the law and say “don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.”

  8. ManAna Says:

    Sad to see the guy get so much heat. On the other hand, this isn’t in the system yet and speculations run wild. Seems people take for granted he’ll get max penalty.
    When all is said and done I doubt he’ll get more than a few days/weeks +probation. A small fine too, perhaps.
    They will evaluate his persona and his computer skills and that will also be part of the ruling. Since he got caught doing/participating in a DDoS my guess is he’s not the sharpest tool in the box.
    It’s not “heavy handed” untill the hand really lays it on him.

    There is no agenda to cover up crimes of fellow anonymous protestors. We are all individuals and if you are STUPID enough to break the law you are stupid enough to pick up the bill for it.
    If another anon would like to help a law-breaker with money for lawyers or whatnot it’s not to cover up the crime, it’s to help making the trial/hearings fair/equal.

    Unlike the cult, we don’t supress the laws of our nations. We use them and if they are violated we don’t like it. That’s why we don’t like the CO$. They violate the laws and pervert the individual freedom of their members.

    While some may say “you are attacking our religion” I can only say, no, I’m not. While scientology might be a religion, the Church of Scientology sure isn’t a church just because it’s the current ruling body of your faith.
    You don’t need a church to practice a religion. A religion can stand alone, a church cannot.

  9. Start Wall Says:

    kids will make stupid decisions and do things like ddos, he deserves to get punished but putting him in jail wont do much good for him or the taxpayers, give him 1000 hrs of community service or something and a fine.

  10. Ultrapoet Says:

    Scientology is NOT a religion. Let’s just get that out of the way, shall we?

    The DDoS attacks were illegal and this poor kid got caught. I’m betting you that they’re probably going to lean on him heavily to rat out his ‘accomplices’. Not sure what will come of this.

  11. D Says:

    some 1 needs 2 organise a whip round 2 raise some cash 2 help the guy

  12. Baggers Says:

    Happy to donate a tenner to this kid. How do we organize a online fund for this?

    Yes the DDOS attack were illegal but it was the seed that brought anonymous to this fight. The fact they are playing it legal now, for the most part, is great but it certainly has not always been this way.
    It is a real shame that this guy is on trail though and if we can help him bear the load of the fine I’d like to do that, we certainly have the numbers for it.

  13. Tom Newton Says:

    I don’t think he deserves prision for this.

    I may speak out on this kids behalf. Afterall, he was unduly influenced by the hate mongers who comprise the “old guard” and got caught up in things.

    What do you think Mark?

    Tom Newton

  14. XENU TV Says:

    I think you’re a troll, Tom.


  15. […] Also: Heaven’s Gate, Atheism: Not Always Godless Heathens, Anonymous on Trial, Tom Cruise – Scientology Rant (FULL), and Peaceful Demostrator Punched by Scientologist at […]


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