NBC sues ‘trademark squatter’ for rights to Dunder Mifflin

A box of Dunder Mifflin paper

A box of Dunder Mifflin paper
Photo: Donald Bowers/Getty Images for Quill.com

In what appears to be a classic Michael Scott-style mess, NBCUniversal is currently unable to get the trademark on the name “Dunder Mifflin” (the fictional paper company of Office) because another company, Jay Kennette Media Group, owns it. It comes from Deadlinewhich indicates that NBCUniversal is appealing the rejection it received from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. and suing Jay Kennette Media Group for allegedly being a “trademark squatter” who “created a business based on registering marks owned by others” and then reselling those marks to their “rightful” owners or actually selling related merchandise to brands.

But you don’t become a so-called brand squatter by owning a single brand, when what else does Jay Kennette Media Group own? Good, according Trademark (which claims to be a “free search engine for publicly available government records” but may not be 100% accurate) it owns “Tree Hill Ravens” (the basketball team of A tree hill), “Dillon Football” (as in Dillon, Texas from Friday night lights), “Nostromo” (the ship of Extraterrestrial), “Super Saiyan” (when Goku’s hair turns yellow), and “Hillman College” (from A different world), in addition to Dunder Mifflin.

She also apparently owned “Weyland Yutani” (the evil society of Extraterrestrial movies), “Miskatonic University” (where Cthulhu graduated) and “Tyrell Corporation” (the evil corporation of blade runner). Jay Kennette Media Group may have perfectly legitimate claims to these marks, or the website may be in error. We do not know. It’s just funny to imagine a universe where the same parent company owns both Dunder Mifflin and the Nostromo.

Excuse us while we connect to AO3 to start writing this. We think of Michael as Ripley, Jim as Dallas, Dwight as an android, Toby as the guy played by John Hurt who gets killed by the Chestburster…


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