Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The Trump administration is oddly unconcerned about the marketing potential of Netflix's Space Force

Space Force
Space Force
Photo: Aaron Epstein (Netflix)

At this point, we’re all far enough into this thing—meaning the miserable experience known as life—to understand that we should never put anything past the Trump administration. No act is too cruel, too petty, or too craven for that bad man and his bad family or any of the similarly bad people who grovel at his feet, so when something seems to fall under their radar, it’s more concerning than it is reassuring. Case in point: The Hollywood Reporter says that Netflix has successfully secured trademark rights to the name “Space Force” in multiple countries around the world for its new Space Force TV show, which is something Trump’s federal government has not done bothered to do for its actual Space Force.

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The thing about this is that it doesn’t really matter. Our First Amendment already protects Netflix Space Force in this country, and by registering it in other countries, foreign branches of Netflix are also protected if the Trump administration decided to start throwing around lawsuits. Getting this taken care was a smart move by Netflix, especially since Trump’s Space Force has not been granted its own trademark rights in the U.S. yet. That being said, a spokesperson for the Air Force told THR that they’re not “aware of any trademark conflicts” between Netflix Space Force and Trump Space Force, going so far as to add, “we wish Netflix and the show’s producers the best in their creative depiction of our nation’s newest branch of the military.”

That… is a surprisingly reasonable reaction? THR notes that it’s unlikely that there would be any confusion between the two Space Forces, with the only possible hiccup coming from merchandise (make sure you’re buying a t-shirt for a Netflix show and not a t-shirt for military propaganda!), but nobody seems to be concerned about that. THR also points out that the U.S. military has been very active about collecting trademarks in the past few decades, so there would be a precedent for Trump’s government making sure it controls all uses of the name “Space Force,” but… that’s not happening.

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Knowing what we know about Trump and his fondness for putting his name on stuff and making money however he possibly can, it’s weird that he’s not doing that here. Is he just too busy focusing on more important things, like America’s response to the coronavirus or—ha ha ha, sorry we can’t even get through the sentence. It’s far more likely that he just hasn’t thought of aggressively making money off of his Space Force yet. Or maybe he’s just really excited about seeing how many fighter jets he can put on the moon. Who knows.

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