From braintree!news.sprintlink.net!howland.reston.ans.net!news.nic.surfnet.nl!sun4nl!xs4all!usenet Fri Sep 29 09:34:15 1995
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Karin Spaink)
Subject: DUTCH PROTEST: a provisional report
Date: Mon, 25 Sep 1995 01:42:57 GMT
Organization: St. Passie Beheer
X-Newsreader: Forte Free Agent 1.0.82
You may have heard of the protests against CoS going on in Holland.
Many people have asked what is going on *exactly*. I will try to
1. Things started when CoS raided XS4ALL. Fonss - who was at the time
the only Dutch user who had the document on his homepage - removed the
Fishman Affidavit from his homepage (leaving the other material from
the FactNet zipkit there).
The indignation was quite immense. Newspapers covered the issue
extensively, there were some items on television and many Dutch
Usenet-newsgroups debated the issue. Most people were truly outraged.
2. Johanw, another XS4ALL-account, soon put up another copy of the
document on *his* homepage and announced this. This triggered lots of
response. D'VanGeely put the document on his homepage too, at DDS (a
free Internet provider), and somebody put a copy on a University
provider (TUE). When Johanw received e-mail by someone declaring
himself to be a CoS-lawyer, he posted a message telling so. This again
caused some commotion.
3. I took an account at Hollands biggest commercial provider (Planet
Internet, which is half-owned by the Dutch Postal & Telephone
Services) and announced a new Fishman-page. I did so because I wanted
to clarify that this was not just a fight between CoS and XS4ALL, but
between CoS and Internet. Planet Internet is familiar with
common-carrier issues and has more lawyer-backup than XS4ALL.
I am more or less a public person (I am a writer and have made several
television-appearances), and I happily made use of this.
4. More reactions were triggered. Other people made use of their
accounts at other providers. Astrolab put a copy on his DDS-homepage,
Newkid put one on his at Cistron and turned it into a really smashing
page on CoS. Nice logos, too! Do take a look.
By now, Astrolab, Cistron and I have received e-mails from someone
stating to be Helena Kobrin, lawyer on behalf of RTC.
5. A call for action started circulating. Many people received e-mails
explaining what was going on and asking them to participate. The idea
is to put up as many homepages containing the F.A. as possible, in
order to make things more difficult for the CoS.
6. Oussama Cherribi, a Dutch Member of Parliament for the Liberal
Party (VVD), decided to put a copy on his homepage too. We phoned (we
have met before) and I asked him what made him decide to do so. He
explained that he'd heard about the case, was somehow reminded of the
Rushdie-affaire, got really mad and acted on instinct. When asked if
he would bow under pressure, he said he was probably prepared to see
this thing through if others would as well.
BTW: the VVD is one of the parties represented in the Government.
7. Last week, a Member of Parliament for the Social-Democrats (PvdA),
Marjet van Zuylen, questioned the Dutch Government on the matter. The
PvdA is *also* represented in our Government. Such questions and
answers are usually dealt with on paper; however, urgent questions are
sometimes replied to verbally during a meeting of Parliament. As of
yet, we do not know *what* questions were asked, nor how or when
they'll be answered. As soon as we know more, we'll post the questions
and answers here.
8. Meanwhile, new homepages have accumulated, due to both Cherribi's
action and the e-mailed request. At present, there are 19 homepages
that include the Fishman Affidavit. The list is included at the end of
9. Last thing I read is that a Dutch Public Broadcasting Service (the
TROS), who have a site at http://www.omroep.nl, wants to put the
Fishman Affidavit on *their* homepage as well. People working at
another Public Broadcasting Service, the VPRO, will debate whether
they will do so as well at their next employee meeting, coming
List of participants, as per september 24th:
Oops... I just caught a Fish at PI-net!
Go look at http://www.pi.net/~kspaink