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Bill Robertson in Frankfurt/Main originally coined the term Freezone in 1983 to designate independent Scientologists, and the Freezone has spread throughout the world with thousands of people using and practising LRH tech outside the CofS. The biggest FZ groups are in Europe but there are many active individuals and smaller groups elsewhere.
The Freezone is mostly made up of persons who were at one time CofS members and left after observing that they were no longer practicing the original philosophy. But some Freezoners got into Scientology solely through the help of another Freezoner.
The term Free Zone in its broader sense includes all individuals and groups who are not or no longer part of the Church of Scientology and who dedicate their activities to spiritual freedom of individuals. In this their work is based in a greater or lesser degree on the technology of LRH.
The term "Free Zone" originally was coined by Captain Bill Robertson; he meant to designate the delivery of Scientology auditing and training outside and independent of the Church of Scientology. (The Church of Scientology is a major user and defender of intellectual property rights, including copyrights and trademarks - another reason for the name of "Free Zone".) Soon afterwards he founded the Ron's Org in 1984. Over many years the two terms were used more or less interchangeably. But even in the early 80s there was a broad field developping with a lot of groups and practices, some of which delivered more or less standard technology, but most of which dealt with alternative versions of Scientology, up to practices where only an insider could have traced the essential parts back to the technology of LRH.
Today the term "Free Zone" is used mostly in its broader sense, so it includes all those practices and groups who deliver therapies and training to help individuals in overcoming mental barriers and to improve abilities and who are building to a greater or lesser degree on Scientology technology.
There is also a German association named "Free Zone" ("Freie Zone e.V.") which from the second part of the 1990s on was very active in getting information regarding the events in the Church of Scientology since 1980 on the internet, as well as data on Captain Bill Robertson and many of his lectures. Most of it still can be found under .
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