Radiohead makes stolen tracks available to help 'Extinction Rebellion'

The band has reacted in unusual fashion to a ransom notice over 18 hours of hacked material. Rather than pay hackers, the group has put the tracks online and asked fans to donate to Extinction Rebellion.

The British rock band Radiohead announced on Tuesday that it would make public some 18 hours of previously unreleased music from the late 1990s, recorded around the time the band made the 1997 album "OK Computer."

The band was recently the victim of hackers who stole the music from singer Thom Yorke's private archive.

Those behind the hack had demanded $150,000 (€133,000) in return for not publishing the tracks, but Radiohead went on the offensive, announcing, "We're releasing all 18 hours on Bandcamp [a music-sharing site] in aid of Extinction Rebellion."

No surprises?

The band says it never intended to release the tracks, but that fans would now be able to purchase the music for 18 pounds ($23.00, €20.20) over the next 18 days, to "find out if we should have paid that ransom."

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DW News | 12.05.2019

Thousands took to the streets of Paris, London and Brussels

Extinction Rebellion, which recently gained attention for days of climate-change protests it orchestrated in London, said, "We thank Radiohead for supporting us so that we can continue to build our already far-reaching and powerful movement of non-violent civil disobedience."

js/msh (AP, dpa)

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

No we can't

Extinction Rebellion, started last year by British academics, ended 11 days of massive disruptions in London by targeting the financial district known as the City. Activists, who are calling for zero emissions by 2025, say investors and traders in the district are making huge profits at the environment's expense.

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

Profiting from ecological destruction

Protesters glued themselves to one another and to the entrance of the London Stock Exchange Thursday. A statement released by the group read: "Many of the most environmentally destructive companies in the world have their stock market listings at the London Stock Exchange (LSE). This institution literally trades in the destruction of our planet."

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

A call for action

Protesters are demanding the British government recognize the dire state of the environment and declare a climate and ecological emergency to prevent the further extinction of life forms and environmental degradation. They are also calling for the creation of a public citizen's assembly to address solutions to climate change.

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

Stock prices hotter than global warming

The use of fossil fuels is widely seen as one of the biggest contributors to global warming, resulting in rising sea levels, violent weather, forced migration, death and destruction. Still, the world's biggest banks have invested some €1.75 trillion ($1.95 trillion) in fossil fuels since the Paris Climate Agreement was adopted three years ago.

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

Sticky problem

Police arrested 1,130 people over the course of the protests, 69 will face criminal charges. Protesters engaged in non-violent acts of civil disobedience such as gluing themselves to buildings, buses, trains, one another, and the street. One protester said: "Some people don't like our methods, but do like our message. What we say is: We're not here to be liked. We're here to get attention."

Climate change: Extinction Rebellion protests target London's financial district

'Something greater than us'

Retired parole officer Phil Kingston celebrated his 83rd birthday by climbing atop a train at Canary Wharf during rush hour. He said: "I'm here because I have the belief that there is something greater than us, which tells me that we don't own this earth. The more we take, the less there is for future generations."

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