Cult Classics

Scientology screengrabThe press release for the official Church of Scientology Video Channel claims that through the portal "people the world over can easily obtain the complete answer to the most often asked question: What is Scientology?" However, the most often asked question about Scientology seems to be, "How did you turn smiley little Joey Potter into a super-creepy Stepford-wife robot cult member?" With hubby Tom Cruise already cackling all over YouTube and one of Anonymous' videos getting close to 3 million views, the COS needed to do some triage. The launch of its YouTube channel touts a "commitment to open communication." Which, of course, starts with disabling all commenting and embedding on its propaganda videos.

Worse yet, Google-owned YouTube seems to be abetting Scientology's mission of closing any dialogue by (now famously) canceling the accounts of two of Scientology's loudest adversaries, XenuTV1 and ToryMagoo44, just a week before the sponsored channel went live. Ironically, YouTube's reasoning for suspending XenuTV1's account was for creating a second account after having his original account suspended - a misdemeanor that the cos has also committed. Mark Bunker, XenuTV1's owner, claims that the real reason YouTube suspended his account was because he was about to post a three-hour interview with Jason Beghe, a former Scientologist, that the COS clearly did not want finding its way into e-mail forwards, IMs, blogs and late-night talk-show monologues.

XenuTV1's Bunker says "I don't expect YouTube to turn away the cash cow of Scientology and ban them from their service the way they banned me. YouTube will allow Scientology to say it was a subsidiary or a file clerk who opened the cancelled account and not the same corporate entity as the paid channel, but that is just crap."
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