Dumb Starbucks: Get some Real (Dumb) Coffee

Woke up and learned about a new cafe this morning: Dumb Starbucks. It is not just a hashtag but a real store serving real (dumb) coffee. Sure they have brand recognition but do you think they will do a pour over?

Steven Johnson
by | Posted: February 10, 2014 | Updated: February 14, 2014

Social Profiles

Google Plus
Blog Post Image

Well it is here. Dumb Starbucks. This is an actual coffee shop with actual coffee, dumb coffee I presume.

Very clever.

Lines over one hour long have been reported.



What you need to know

  • This is a real cafe and they serve real coffee.
  • Serve 'Dumb Iced Coffee' and 'Dumb Frappicuccino'
  • Located in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles
  • Has become quite a success. Lines up to one hour long.
  • Coffee is free, from what we can tell.
  • Coffee is not very good, from what we can tell.
  • No one is sure how long it will last. Stabucks has a lot of lawyers.
  • No one knows who is behind this.
  • They care claiming it is a parody and using fair use to modify the official logo
  • Most people find this very funny.
  • They will probably get their own Wikipedia page.
  • @justinshanes is concerned Dumb Starbucks will put independently owned parody coffee shops out of business. We agree Justin.


Dumb Starbucks on Jimmy Kimmel

Checkout Dumb Starbucks founder, Nathan Fielder, on Jimmy Kimmel


Dumb Starbucks Menu 



How can they do this? Dumb Starbucks FAQ

Is this a Starbucks?

No. Dumb Starbucks is not affiliated with Starbucks Corporation. We are simply using their name for marketing purposes"

How is that Legal?

Short answer - parody law.

Can you elaborate?

Of course. Bay adding the word 'dumb', wea are technically "making fun" of Starbucks, which allows us tu use their trademarks under a law known as 'fair use'. Fair use is a doctrine that permits use of copyrighted material in a parodical worth without permission from the rights holder. It's the same law that allows Weird Al Yankovic to use the music from Michael Jackson's "Beat It" in his parody song "Eat It".

So is this a real business?

Yes it is. Although we are a fully functioning coffee shop, for legal reasons Dumb Starbucks needs to be categorized as a work of parody art. So, in the eyes of the law, our "coffee shop" is actually an art gallery and the "coffee" you're buying is considered the art. But that's for our lawyers to worry about. All you need to do is enjoy our delicious coffee!

Are you saying Starbucks is dumb?

Not at all. In fact, we love Starbucks and look up to them as role models. Unfortunately, the only way to use their intellectual property und fair use is if was are making fun of them. So the "dumb" comes out of nesessity, not enmity.

Okay, I think I understand now.

Great. Anything else?

I guess not.

Okay thanks. See you later.

FAQ as posted:



Where to get Some Dumb Coffee

1802 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

twitter: @dumbstarbucks

email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


Other Great Stories


Like I said before very clever.

What do you think about Dumb Starbucks?  It is a great opening for an interesting conversation.

Update: February 14, 2014: Added Video of Nathan Fielder on Starbucks



Steven Johnson

Steven is a web developer and big coffee enthusiast. He lives in Atlanta, with his wife and two little girls.

Social Profiles

Google Plus