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Anonymous and the police

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This content originated on WhyWeProtest forums. Click here to see the original thread.


Warning: The information below has often not been updated since July 2008.

Reading reports and looking at videos in many places, it is interesting to note how different the attitude of police officers was from one city to the other.

I think that it could be interesting to mention here the general attitude city by city, beginning by a general assessment of the present situation - using the scale below - with complements in tag style:

  • Cooperative (police grants special rights due to the specificity of scientology and / or anonymous)
  • Neutral (police grants the same rights as other groups)
  • Hostile (police tends to hinder anonymous' action; off-duty officers in scientology's pay-roll; arrests)
  • Mixed
  • No police

I begin with the cases I know. Feel free to complete or correct me. References are welcomed.

Color code for evolutions: Improvement Deterioration Complex

CooperativeEdit

Europe: Berlin, D; Copenhagen, DK; Belfast, NI; Düsseldorf, D; Lausanne, CH; London Met, UK; Munich, D

United States: Boston, MA; Buffalo, NY; Chicago, IL Moved from Hostile; Clearwater, FL; Los Angeles, CA; Nashville, TN; Philadelphia, PA; San Diego, CA; San Francisco, CA; St-Louis, MO; Tustin, CA; Washington, DC [see footnote 1]

Canada: Edmonton, AL; Ottawa, ON; Toronto, ON; Winnipeg, MB

Asia Pacific: Brisbane, AUS; Perth, AUS

NeutralEdit

United Kingdom: Edinburgh, UK

United States: Anchorage, AK; Atlanta (DeKalb), GA: Moved from Hostile, Austin, TX; Columbus, OH; Denver, CO; Minneapolis, MI; Mountain View, CA; Richmond, VA; New York, NY; Sacramento, CA.

Canada: Montreal, QC, Ottawa, ON

Asia Pacific: Adelaide, AUS; Melbourne, AUS

HostileEdit

Europe: UK: London City Video: moved from Mixed; Manchester: moved from Neutral

United States: Detroit, MI; Miami, FL; Orlando, FL

Canada: Vancouver, BC: Moved from Neutral

MixedEdit

Europe: Paris, F (in French); Birmingham, UK

United States: Kansas City, MO

No policeEdit

New Zeland: Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington

United States : Albuquerque, NM

FootnotesEdit

  • 1: Officer explaining to scientologists Anonymous' rights to protest [1]; speech of a Divisional Commander at the opening of new scientology HQ: [2], but the relevant section is removed from [3]; Chief Superintendent commending role of scientology after 7/7 attacks and officers dining at scientology expenses [4]


Current Issues with the London, England PoliceEdit

  • On Saturday, August 15th at the scheduled monthly protest on Totenham Court Road, London, Anonymous was told they were not allowed to play music. They were told this by officer Jim Moore, EK60. (See this link for Spangly's brief interview with him).
  • About 10 minutes after this, they talked to Jim Moore again. Namenlos filmed this clip with YetAnotherAnonymous immediately after.
  • On this day, Delicious Trap was also instructed to take her Anonymous flag down because it was "intimidating".
  • Research has revealed that Anonymous can play music because,


"67 Playing of sound recordings for purposes of club, society, &c (1) It is not an infringement of the copyright in a sound recording to play it as part of the activities of, or for the benefit of, a club, society or other organisation if the following conditions are met.

(2) The conditions are—

(a) that the organisation is not established or conducted for profit and its main objects are charitable or are otherwise concerned with the advancement of religion, education or social welfare, and

(b) that the proceeds of any charge for admission to the place where the recording is to be heard are applied solely for the purposes of the organisation."

From Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (c. 48)




"it is likely that futre events will be restricted to 2hrs (13.00hrs to 15.00hrs) with no barriers etc."


  • Research has revealed that a demonstration can only be restricted if,

"(a) it may result in serious public disorder, serious damage to property or serious disruption to the life of the community, or

(b) the purpose of the persons organising it is the intimidation of others with a view to compelling them not to do an act they have a right to do, or to do an act they have a right not to do,"

From Public Order Act 1986 (c. 64) - Statute Law Database



  • On Friday, August 21st, a member of anonymous received a reply to their Freedom of Information request, which can be read here. The upshot of this FOI was that
    • In 2008 the police were called to TCR 36 times
    • In 2009 to date the police were called to TCR 27 times
    • In this time, there have only been 20 officially recorded demonstrations at TCR on Saturdays.
    • There have been no cautions or arrests.


  • On Saturday, August 22nd, Anonymous held a mini-raid at TCR. Namenlos recorded this clip with EK EK788, and EK190, where Anonymous was told they were allowed to play music at a quieter level, but were asked not to play Rick Astley.

"keep the Rick Astley off"


*Due to the lower numbers, there will be no police or barriers present at any future protests.

*The police will expect a protest of some form at TCR most weekends.

*Calls from scifags or others will be dealt with by whoever's on duty.

*Although they are not banning music, local residents and businesses may get the council involved if we continue to play it loudly Short bursts (rickrolls etc) are acceptable.

Useful links for UK AnonymousEdit

Activists' Legal Project Resources Your Rights - Static Demonstrations and Assemblies How To Protest On The Right Side of the Law

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