comScore

Comedy Central Star Was Behind ‘Dumb Starbucks’ the Whole Time

One day after it mysteriously appeared in a random strip mall in Los Angeles, the mystery of “Dumb Starbucks” has been revealed. It turns out that Nathan Fielder, the comedian and star of Comedy Central’s Nathan for You was the man behind the coffee shop that narrowly got away with using various Starbucks trademarks by invoking “parody law.”

Fielder revealed himself via the @DumbStarbucks Twitter account as the founder and president of the company. “By adding the word dumb,” he explained in a video, “we are legally allowed to use the coveted Starbucks name and logo because we have built the minimum requirements to be considered a parody under U.S. law.”

Watch video below, via YouTube:

The comedian, who on the first season of his eponymous show, helped businesses like a petting zoo by staging a successful viral video, elaborated on the ‘Dumb Starbucks” premise during a press conference outside the store on Monday. “The word ‘dumb’ is just out of necessity,” he said. “My entire marketing plan depended on using their corporate logo to get attention and the only way to legally do it is by using ‘dumb,’ so it was the minimum we could do.”

Watch video below, via Bloomberg News:

Viacom, which owns Comedy Central, confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter that “Dumb Starbucks” will be featured in an episode of Nathan for You‘s second season, scheduled to begin this summer. “The episode relating to ‘Dumb Starbucks’ constitutes protected free expression,” the spokesperson said. “Viacom takes intellectual property rights seriously, and also recognizes the important constitutional protection afforded to expressive works characterized by social commentary.”

While Fielder said he plans to open another “Dumb Starbucks” location in Brooklyn in the coming weeks, it appears that the LA flagship store may have been short-lived. But when the shop was ultimately shut down on Monday it had nothing to do with copyright infringement. The city closed it on health and safety code violations:

[photo via screengrab]

— —

>> Follow Matt Wilstein (@TheMattWilstein) on Twitter

[photo via screengrab]

— —

>> Follow Matt Wilstein (@TheMattWilstein) on Twitter

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]

Filed Under:

Follow Mediaite: