So what was the story behind Friday’s Occupy Wall Street Radiohead hoax?

by Jonathan on October 3, 2011

Many of us are still scratching our heads about last Friday. As you will recall, Radiohead were rumored to play a show at Lower Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park to support the Occupy Wall Street protests. Throughout the day, it became more and more clear that this wasn’t happening, despite confirmation from the Occupy Wall Street organizers, saying they were in direct contact with the band. Later on, they admitted that they were victims of a hoax.

Over the weekend, the Village Voice posted the fake email which started the whole thing, supposedly from Radiohead manager Bryce Edge:

From: Bryce Edge
Date: Thursday, September 29, 2011
Subject: RE: Radiohead @ Occupy Wall Street
To: arts_culture@nycga.net
Dear Occupiers,

My name is Bryce Edge, and I’m one of the managers for the band
Radiohead. The guys are really impressed with what you have managed to
pull off, and they wanted to stop by and play a couple songs in
support before leaving New York. I don’t want to create a big media
circus that might worry the police or endanger what you’ve built, plus
the band wants to play for the people who have been camped out, not
everyone in New York who didn’t get a ticket for Thursday’s show. I
was told this was the committee to email – do you think this would be
possible? They have some unscheduled time Friday afternoon between 4
and 6, would that work? I read that the police aren’t allowing sound
equipment, but they could do acoustic. Let me know.

Best,
Bryce Edge

Courtyard Productions, Inc
8383 Wilshire Boulevard # 526
Beverly Hills, CA 90211-2425

Yesterday, Gothamist posted an email from the supposed “trickster” (pun intended) who says he started the rumor to get people to come down to the protests:

Yeah, you found me, but I’ll be taking my story to the Times freelancer who got arrested on the bridge yesterday instead. To the gutsy go the spoils. I’m not an “organizer” or a provocateur, I’m an occupier who tried something, like a lot of us are. The whole occupation was a bluff by Canadians in the beginning anyway. If you continue to think of the only acting bodies as the organizers and self-declared spokespeople, you’ll continue to miss what’s happening. The prank was to give folks an excuse to go to Zuccotti, and although I’m sure I’m terribly sorry for all the pain and suffering I’ve caused apolitical Radiohead fans, it worked, and now our numbers are larger and growing. But it was also to illustrate the buffoonery of self-important spokespeople and committees. This is what happens when two people get put in charge of something (the vaguely tyrannical “Arts and Culture committee”) and empower themselves to speak “officially.” Now they’ve put one person in charge of communications. There are left authoritarians too, they’re a vocal minority, but they don’t speak for me or plenty of others.

So this is a call for more humor, more pranks, more of that good old anon shit at Occupy Wall Street and at the other occupations springing up around the country. It’s not that hard, it’s a lot more fun than long meetings, and it’ll work.

NOTE: This email is for publication in its entirety or not at all. None of that out-of-context lamestream media trickery. As a precautionary measure, I’ve CC’ed the comrades at Gothamist, who seem totally prepared to call you out for even the appearance of violating source instructions. You, of course, don’t have to publish this note, but I imagine they probably will.

Officially yours,

J. Erin Stubbie

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  • Pagemactaylor

    What a douche

  • jose

    it got me there…!

  • Scott

    The trickster is meaningless…

  • Emily

    Wow.  Not even taking into account what that person did, they simply came off in that email as a complete and utter douche bag.  The wording and the phrasing and the arrogance disgusted me.  (Even without having spent my time waiting for a band that never showed up and never was going to.)  Glad I live across the country, cause if I was anywhere near NY, I would have fallen for it.

  • Del Preston

    The fact that trickster referenced the “lamestream media” shows how big a douche he is.  The only person I’ve ever use that term is Palin and her Teabag minions.  All douches, all the time.  

  • Dan

    man- Mews is really taking this shit up an notch.

  • OnionMan

    for the good folks that were there… can you compare the size of the crowds pre-radiohead hoax? and then around 4-6. was it a big jump? and… has it stayed above pre-radiohead hoax levels since?

  • pankaj saraf

    i like good post

    thanks

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