The "Rindos / UWA Case" Site
(Last modified: March 27, 2002
This page carries links to hot new developments in the site, in reverse
chronological order, the most recent at the top.
March 2002 -
The Subversion of Australian Universities, edited by John Biggs & Richard Davis.
Fund for Intellectual Dissent. Free online at:
Especially see chapter six, "David Rindos versus the University of Western Australia:
analogies to the Orr case, by Brian Martin".
Can the Internet be regulated? by Helen Roberts (Consultant to Law and
Public Administration Group). Research Paper 35 1995-96 Australian Parliamentary Library
- refers to the Rindos/Hardwick case and its context in Australian and Internet law
November 2001 - a scandal closer to home
Former PhD candidate, Michael Pyshnov, encountered difficulties in the early
1980's at the University of Toronto. More details:
University of Toronto Graduate Students' Union notice and
summary of his appeal plus
Michael Pyshnov's own site.
* Report No 15
- The Appeals and Review Processes for Western Australian Universities(1 Jun 2000)
* Report No 4
- The events surrounding the denial of tenure to the late Dr David Rindos by the University of Western Australia (4 Dec 1997)
November 2000 - other controversial web sites...
Un-related to the Rindos-UWA Case, but equally contentious are several
sites that have criticized universities and teachers in the US. An article
in the Chronicle tells more:
Anonymous Web Site Posts Rumors, Grievances, and Leaked Documents.
The Chronicle Dec 1, 2000. http://chronicle.com/free/v47/i14/14a03901.htm.
1 June 2000 - a second WA Parliamentary Report released!
The WA Parliamentary Public Administration Committee has completed a
further report addressing in somewhat broader terms another of the original
terms of reference of the Rindos/UWA inquiry. Entitled Report No 15 The
Appeals and Review Processes for Western Australian Universities, a
available through the official WA site.
19 January 2000 - more battles in Oz...?
Check out Brian Martin's
Suppression of dissent site, including an account of Dudley Pinnock
at the University of Adelaide -
Brian's site or
18 January 2000 - Suppression Stories...
Another Brian Martin item,
Suppression Stories (full text), "covers patterns of suppression, the
problem of defamation, peer review, formal channels, the role of media,
difficulties in opposing suppression and advice for dissidents".
25 November 1999 - whistleblower manual out...
While not directly related to the site, any would be whistleblowers
might potentially benefit from giving this item a onceover...
(Brian Martin's email is:
The Whistleblower's Handbook: How to Be an Effective Resister
Charlbury, UK: Jon Carpenter; Sydney: Envirobook, 1999.
ISBN 1-897766-52-1 (Jon Carpenter), ISBN 0-85881-167-7 (Envirobook).
July 14, 1999 - a new Web biography
The Anthropology Department of Minnesota State University, Mankato,
has posted a
Sep 30, 1998 - WA Parliament delays...
The WA Parliament has stated that the long awaited
final report will not be out until the "end of the year", long after
the original estimate which was to have been March/April....
June 8th, 1998 - another WA Parl Report...?
A new WA Parliamentary Report may have been recently tabled. But there are
conflicting reports about this and whether it has been released yet. If anyone
has seen a copy, please let me know...!
A link to maps
about Australia and Perth.
More about the Visitorial Process!
P.W.F. Whalley's article about the origins and ramifications of
"The University Visitor"
A new thought: was the UWA attempt at censorship a
VC Fay Gale to retire!
See West Australian 6 Dec 1997 for details
Now online, thanks to the UWA Counsel.
More clippings added...
I have added a slew of newspaper stories from March through December of
1997. (Anyone who can contribute the rest that are still missing would be
UWA Parliamentary report is released!!
Dec 4, 1997, the Parliamentary Report has finally been completed and released:
Report No 4 The events surrounding the denial of tenure to the late Dr David
Rindos by the University of Western Australia.
Dave Rindos has been completely vindicated of all claims made
against him. The essence is that he was denied natural justice, that the
procedures of the University were at fault, and that the behaviour of some of
those at UWA whose task it was to conduct a fair and comprehensive internal
inquiry into the matter was questionable (see the email message by Leon
Deleuil for initial details.)
UWA has replied that this is not really the case, in a
media statement dated December 4, 1997.
official WA Parliament copy.
"Trouble in cyberspace..."
March 6, 1997, University at Buffalo newspaper publishes a
on the brief melee between UB and UWA over the Rindos Site.
Action Group Formed
An action group has been formed by former students and friends of David
Rindos and is quickly being joined by others including upset academics
from UWA. Read
Bennett's Beat from the
February 16th Sunday Times for more details.
Despite the death of David Rindos, news articles continue to be uploaded in
the 1996 and
1997 Press archives!
An obituary summarises his short career
(also online at the
AAA Anthropology Newsletter site), and a
short essay written by David Rindos really cuts to the heart of his
true nature. Please read it.
Dave has passed away. It occured early Monday morning, December 10th, while
he was asleep. Please see the memorial message
posted to the Net, and stay tuned for more details on how that will affect the
whole UWA affair.
For the last few months (mid 1996), the University of Western Australia
has begun to make legal threats against
this site and the people connected with its existance and maintenance.
To gain further data on these, and other, developments, turn to our
*ALL* *NEW* Censorship Menu!
The University has contacted various news media in Australia
claiming that this Site defames, and thereby seeking to ensure that the
URL is not published. One example involves the case where a letter to the Australian newspaper
generated a warning letter sent by e-mail by
the University lawyer to the author of the letter. One American Professor
of Law has already commented on the
legal basis for the University's actions.
The University also took action
against the UWA Graduate Students and forced them to break a link to this
Site in their
Newsletter [this link takes you directly to their site in
Around the same time, the file on the UWA system to a Feature Article and the link to a speech by the Hon Mark Nevill, MLC as given in
the West Australian Parliament became non-functioning [Obviously, these
links work here :-).]
It is interesting that UWA apparently believes it
improper for its computing system to access material which is part
of the Record of their own State Parliament.
UWA has also writen a letter to the State University of New York,
Buffalo, apparently making claims about this Site and threatening action
against both the University and the Site Maintainer. The State University
of New York responded holding it is blameless since it does NOT, as a
matter of academic freedom, control the contents of Web Sites.
Further communication followed.
As a result of these developments, in the middle of May, I wrote to UWA asking what they found
objectionable here. UWA's lawyer's reply, sent to me in early June was
less than helpful!
In early July, the University of Buffalo sent a formal letter to the legal firm
representing UWA in their dealing with SUNY. The State University of New
York pointed out the obvious -- that if UWA has some sort of problem with
material held at this Site, they should contact the Site Maintainers!
Since 1996, activity on this "front" seems to have cooled, except to
attract interest by various media; e.g. the Australian National Broadcasting
interviewed several of the key players [
local copy of transcript] in March of 1996, and the University at Buffalo
Reporter published a
summary article in March of 1997.
As a result of these ongoing actions, various steps are being taken to
ensure that open and free communication will be maintained, and that
links to this Site, wherever it might be located, will be enhanced.
The Anthropology Home Page at the
University of South Dakota now carries a direct link to the Site, and, if
necessary, it will be carrying a "mirror" copy on the near future.
The Justice on Campus Project has also decided to mirror the Site. You might wish to
check out their Home Pages to gain
futher information on their important work in the areas of free speech and
Public links in Australia, and elswhere, are now being created and the
University is being notified by the persons involved so that UWA will
know who to sue if it decides to follow up this particular (or should I
say "peculiar"?) legal action
Parliamentary Inquiry into the Scandal at UWA
In December 1994 the Honorable Mark Nevill, MLC, delivered a speech about the "archaeology affair" at UWA
in the West Australia Parliament. As a result of this speech, the problems
existed in the archaeology department at UWA have finally become
Then, in late March 1996, a formal inquiry began in the Upper House of the
Parliament of Western Australia, with the powers of a royal commission.
The Terms of Reference give strong emphasis
to possible administrative mistreatment of Dr Rindos and the nature of the
internal management of the University.
The first public hearings of the Committee were held on 22 April, with
both Dr Rindos and Vice-chancellor Gale presenting testimony. Dr Rindos
spoke mostly about the deplorable conditions he had witnessed in the
archaeology department, while the Vice-chancellor, noting that she was
testifying "under protest," attacked Mr Nevill for his speech and claimed
that the Parliamenary Committee had a "political" motive in taking on the
Her presentation to this public
session has only recently [end June] been put online. Some might read it
as containing rather heavy-handed irony! :-)
We hope to have the news reports on this hearing avialable in the near
future (sadly, we are not multi-media enabled at this site so we will be
unable to include the TV coverage :-) ). Attempts will be made to keep
this Site up to date, but given the actions in Parliament, developments
will likely go far faster than our abilities to update the Site.
GOTO the Parliamentary Menu
The Home Page Commentary on the Committees
which were set up to look into UWA's archaeology department has been
updated to take into account the recent release of the Report of the
Second UWA Inquiry into events in Archaeology [the "Hotop/Clyde"
A new link has been added to the Site which provides detailed data on Dr
Rindos' treatment by the University. His submission to the Western Australian Ombudsman
shows how the University of Western Australia ignored its own written
regulations during the denial of his tenure.
The Home Page section on The Aftermath to the
Denial of Tenure has been extensively rewritten to account for
developments in the various places in which Rindos sought some redress,
namely the Ombudsman, Industrial Commission, and Visitor.
A large number of newspaper reports starting coming out in February 1996,
largely as a result of the Parliamenary Speech. While only a few of
these, thus far, are online, some idea may be gotten of the coverage
occurring in Western Australia by looking at the Press Menu for 1996:
The transcript of an Australian Broadcasting Company Radio program on
the events surrounding the events in Archaeology at UWA is now avaiable
on the Web [see the link to the ABC Site in Part I of the 1996 Press
Part I [Jan-March], and
Part II [April-date].
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