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July 12, 2004

God Bless The Odeon

So, it's not in any way ironic that, on a day when even a laggard like me has decided to ditch the security-hole-filled IE and start using Mozilla at work, news breaks that Those Lovely People at The Odeon have made Matthew Somerville take his accessible version of their site down.

So, pretty much overnight, most of the people who browse at work and listen to what their IT guy says will be seeing a link-free Odeon homepage that looks like this:

Mr Somerville, I think it's time to start asking for Big Cash to put your version back again....

(via paranoid fish and blackbeltjones)

PS: Very busy. Much to tell, but doo damn little time.

Posted by Tom Dolan at July 12, 2004 03:59 PM

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Odeon cinemas UK are actively shutting down the webpages of
disabled people in the UK. Any pages that mention or link
to the Odeon website are being targetted.
One disabled boy (Matthew Somerville) developed a special film
website for the disabled. It linked to Odeon UK as a courtesy
but they demanded it be shut down and taken from the web due
to illegal copyrights.

BASTARDS! And they are only targetting the disabled, not
normal people who can fight for themselves. That is why
we are sending this message...

It's time to start an internet campaign, we must correct this
injustice! We demand the following...

b) Luke Veteres resignation
b) Odeon to publically apologise to the disabled boy
Mattew Somerville for their insulting behaviour.
c) Odeon to immediately fix their website so it works
with all browsers such as Mozilla (and all Gecko based),
Netscape 3/4, Safari, Lynx, HotJava, WebTV, Wap and Mosaic.

What should you do?
a) Mail Luke Vetere at lvetere@odeonuk.com and tell him he's a
fucking bastard. A template letter might be

Dear Luke Vetere,
You are a fucking bastard. You have no right to shut down
the homepage of the disabled boy Matthew Somerville. I
demand you re upload his site immediately. Until you do
I will not visit Odeon cinemas UK

b) Send this mail to everybody you know (several times so they
get the message) and ask them to do the same

Together we can beat the bastards!

Posted by: OFFICIAL CAMPAIGN EMAIL at July 17, 2004 08:31 PM

I write here to inform you of the really quite shocking actions being
perpetuated by the UK cinema chain Odeon against a disabled Scottish
boy Matthew Somerville.

9 year old Matthew suffers from the rare, medically unknown condition
of "Shatner’s Palsy" which corrodes un-oxygenated body tissue. Doctors
work hard on a cure, but admit to the possibility of a fatal remission
within 70 years. Despite this, Matthew continues to brighten the lives
of everyone he meets.

Incredibly, despite having weak arms, he is still able to operate a
computer using a deviously constructed input device, consisting of a
covered spherical ball and a pair of single-pole-single-throw latches.
Resting his scrawny hand on the tool, any small movements are converted
to gigabyte digital input signals.

The disabled boy constructed a special film portal for the disabled.
It was very popular, receiving over 20 "hits" a month. Webmaster
experts based at Durham University examined his JavaScript code using
remote debugging techniques and proclaimed it "fully polymorphic,
slightly recursive and 100% XML ready".

Despite this, Odeon cinemas have ordered him to "cease and desist"
using the recently enacted European Millennium Copyright Act (EMCA) to
copyright the notion of "film discussion" by a person and/or persons
"without full limb mobility". They have demanded his website is put in
the Windows XP recycle bin, and insisted "it should then be emptied".

This cannot be allowed to happen. The disabled should have almost as
many rights as normal people, at least with regard to discussing films.
Luckily for us, people power works, and that’s where you come in.

How can you help disabled boy Matthew Somerville?
a) Email Odeon customer support (info@odeonuk.com) and tell them you are
boycotting their chain (Rocky 6 excepted) while they continue
their legal actions against disabled boys.
b) Email Odeon UK chairman Luke Vetere (lvetere@odeonuk.com) and insist
that the website be retrieved from the recycle bin, wiped clean, and
uploaded back onto the UK internet web system using FTP packet protocols.
c) Email and post this message to everybody you know (several times), and
on every "blog" site you can find.

In addition, why not join Matthew in his separate quest to enter the
"Guinness Book of Records" with the record of "largest collection of
used cinema ticket stubs". Matthew is aiming for over a thousand.
Send them, perhaps with a letter of encouragement to

Matthew Somerville
Guinness Record Attempt
109 Eastern Drive

Remember, only by working together can we can beat an evil law, and
brighten the failing heart of a young disabled angel.

Posted by: For justice at August 23, 2004 01:42 AM

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