Religion

Church Of Scientology Pays For Twitter Ads To Counter, Attack Critics

| by Michael Allen

The HBO documentary "Going Clear" aired last night, shocking viewers with revelations from former members about the alleged tactics used by the Church of Scientology.

While viewers posted their support for the film on Twitter, the Church of Scientology paid for promotional tweets to combat critics and the film by Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney.

According to Salon.com, some of the promoted tweets came from the Twitter handles @Scientology and @FreedomEthics, which is Scientology’s Freedom magazine.

@FreedomEthics launched a vicious attack on Gibney with multiple tweets:

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#AlexGibney, Doctor Of Propaganda: If you need propaganda, the doctor is in!

#AlexGibney’s own words confirm that he never wanted 2 be objective w/ #GoingClear

#AlexGibney’s agenda confirms #GoingClear was #propaganda all along.

#AlexGibney lives religious bigotry. #GoingClear #propaganda

#AlexGibney's #GoingClear – talking heads, insufferable music, way too long...Zzzzzzzzzzzzz...

In response to reports about the paid tweets, Church of Scientology representative Karen Pouw told Ad Week, "We had an all-time high interest in Scientology during the airing of the HBO show. Over 50,000 people came to our website before we even issued a tweet. As there were so many people curious and interested, we decided to spread the word.”

However, Gibney told TheWrap, "A major thing the church got by on for many years was intimidating people into silence, based on their threats of litigation and brutish psychological games."

Sources: Salon.com, Ad Week, Twitter #1, Twitter #2, Twitter #3, Twitter #4, Twitter #5, Twitter #6, TheWrap
Image Credit: Twitter Screenshot