On Sunday 23 July 2023, the infamous British environmental activist group Just Stop Oil organised a banquet in London to “step back, grieve for what will die and disappear but also to celebrate what we have achieved.” The event saw a gathering of esteemed Just Stop Oil leaders and included campaign updates, stories from people “in resistance,” as well as plant-based food and music.
But, some people out there wanted to give the activist group a taste of their own medicine and decided to crash the banquet in a rather innovative manner…
Pranksters infiltrated the event and set off panic alarms attached to orange helium-filled balloons, disrupting the dinner and confusing the attendees:
This is not the first time a counter-protest against Just Stop Oil has been orchestrated either. A movement known as Just Stop Pissing People Off previously blocked Just Stop Oil activists during a protest in Elephant and Castle.
The counter-protest group was revealed to be led by British YouTubers Josh Pieters and Archie Manners, who said they’d sent a mole “undercover” to try and disrupt Just Stop Oil’s event.
In a statement released after the prank, Manners explained why the counter-movement decided to assemble in the first place: “Climate change is the greatest crisis facing our generation—but if we’re going to solve it, we need to work together. Just Stop Oil’s tactics over the last 18 months haven’t worked; indeed people across the country are put off this vital cause as a result of their protesting.”
In response, Just Stop Oil took to Twitter to share a video of the interruption, stating: “Props to Just Stop Pissing People Off for their impeccable action design. We invited them to eat with us, but the alarms they let off at our banquet instead were the perfect metaphor for the urgency of the climate crisis.”