Landmark Education experienced another humiliating legal defeat concerning its efforts to censor critics on the Internet.

As previously reported by CultNews the private for-profit seminar-selling company some have called a “cult,” has been on what appears like a crusade lately, to suppress a French documentary from being seen on the Internet.

Host of French videoThe would-be forbidden video is titled “Voyage to the Land of the Gurus,” and it may well be the pièce de résistance, when it comes to critically analyzing Landmark.

The French documentary team managed to get inside the “Forum,” Landmark’s introductory weekend seminar, with the use of hidden cameras. The resulting reportage effectively peels away the company’s veneer of imposed secrecy, to demonstrate objectively how the so-called “self-help” seminar, resembles systematic abuse and “brainwashing.”

The televised program made Landmark look so bad; that the company practically fled France after it was seen nationally in 2004.

One Netizen decided to let everyone see just what a good a job the French had done, so the person now known only as “John Doe,” posted the video complete with English subtitles on YouTube and later at Google.

Harry RosenbergApparently, Landmark President Harry Rosenberg and his General Counsel Art Schreiber quickly sprung into action, managing to purge the film from servers, with bogus claims regarding the company’s copyright.

Such a frivolous claim would be like an author or screenwriter saying that to quote his or her work for the purpose of a review is a “copyright violation.”

A preposterous claim, which would never stand up in court.

Nevertheless Landmark attempted to manipulate the Digital Millenium Act for the purpose of exercising subpoena power thereby forcing Google to reveal the identity of the anonymous Netizen.

Shades of Scientology?

It seems that Landmark hoped to follow in the infamous legal footsteps of an even bigger purported “cult,” by using frivolous litigation to harass and hopefully suppress its Internet critics.

Enter the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an Internet free speech advocate, which effectively thwarted and humiliated Landmark, ultimately protecting John Doe’s right to privacy.

The net result of all of Landmark’s bullying is a hollow settlement, which prohibits “John Doe” from posting the video again in exchange for dropping all litigation.

Fait accompli?


It seems that Landmark and its General Counsel Art Schreiber just don’t “get it.”

Once the genie is out of the bottle you can’t put it back again.

That is, the would-be forbidden video has been downloaded, uploaded and spread across the Internet like a virus.

In fact, it can now be seen once again on Google. Another Netizen has since posted it there.

Inside LandmarkTo see it on Googleclick here — (since deleted see follow-up below).

Foolish attorney Art Schreiber only added another humiliating legal defeat to his growing list of lost litigation, while Netizens gained another landmark victory for free speech on the Internet.

And news reports about Landmark’s Internet censorship crusade has spread around the globe, picked up even by the worldwide wire service Reuters.

The only genuine copyright claim that could be made legitimately would have to come from the producers of “Pieces a Conviction,” which is the originating program that actually made the documentary. And reliable sources have told CultNews that the French don’t seem to care.

Se la vie.

Follow-up: Once again Landmark has apparently persuaded Google to delete the “forbidden video” from its site. However, the video can still be seen through an Australian anti-cult Web site, click here. Landmark’s efforts to silence free speech defeated again.

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3 comments untill now

  1. God bless (sorry fellow atheists) for the power of the internet! Let us hope for $cientology to follw suit and fade to legal oblivion.

  2. ajinajan @ 2006-12-06 22:45

    Info from :

    Relating to the Wrongful Death Lawsuit involving Landmark Education:
    The plaintiff claims that “Jason Weed experienced a psychotic episode shortly after taking the Landmark Advanced Course, and shot and killed a letter-carrier, Robert Jenkins.”

    The case page is here:
    The most recent motions are about choosing a location for the trial. The difference with this case is that Landmark is the defendant, and the plaintiff seems determined to follow through.

  3. […] Landmark Education stumbles stupidly to hollow settlement Cult News Landmark Education wants to make French news report a “forbidden video” on the Net Cult News Why did Landmark Education leave France? Cult News Landmark Drops Copyright Infringement Subpoenas On Google And Anonymous Critic InformationWeek […]