Author Topic: [The Snitch / SFWeekly] Anti-Scientologists Subject of U.C. Academic Paper  (Read 1257 times)

Offline Lorelei

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At the Pacific Sociological Association conference in Oakland today, a gaggle of academics from the U.C. Irvine will be presenting their research on the Anonymous protesters of the Church of Scientology, the movement we covered in a 2008 cover story. The paper is titled "Project Chanology, Scientology & Memes: Shifting Notions of Movement Frames & Protest Strategy in the Age of Internet Culture." A pretty lofty title for a bunch of self-professed computer nerds wearing funny masks. We caught up with one of the co-authors, sociology graduate student B. Remy Cross, to get a preview.

Why would an academic want to study internet geeks in Guy Fawkes masks?

"This was interesting to us from an academic perspective because social movement scholars say you need some important things to make a movement successful: resources, a physical location, people you can depend on, money. This was a movement that didn't seem to have any of these things.

Many online movements try to take it from online to offline and usually they fail. That's what we were expecting. [On the way to the first international Anonymous protest day in February 2008 in Las Vegas] we were joking it would be a success if there were 15 people. We get there and drive past the church and there's hundreds of people there."

From Comment section:

Carl Eric von Kleist, IV says:

I was at the protest in Atlanta, Georgia. I heard about the protesting on 4chan, but have disliked Scientology ever since I lived in Florida and found out about Clearwater and Lisa McPherson.

It was wild.

The riot squad was there. With fully automatic weapons, riot armor, and tear-gas guns. Apparently, the local "Church" we were protesting at told them we were terrorists.

Posted On: Thursday, Apr. 8 2010 @ 2:03PM
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