Last week, Alabama football released a trailer for a new web show called Shop Talk that will feature Nick Saban, Julio Jones and some current Crimson Tide players chatting and joking while getting their hair cut. It looked fun and innocent enough:
— Alabama Football (@AlabamaFTBL) March 27, 2018
But the show caught the eye (and the ire) of one LeBron James, or at least of the people who run his multimedia platform, Uninterrupted.
According to ESPN, Uninterrupted has sent a letter to Alabama expressing concern that Shop Talk infringes on the platform’s show, The Shop, in which LeBron and friends sit and banter while getting their hair cut. The Shop has aired two episodes over the past 10 months or so and has reportedly filmed another.
— UNINTERRUPTED (@uninterrupted) March 6, 2018
Shop Talk clearly features a similar format to that of The Shop, while also using the word “shop” in its name and scissors in its logo, just like the Uninterrupted show. It does seem unlikely that those similarities are pure coincidence, but who knows. It’s not as if banter in a barbershop is a purely novel concept.
It also remains unclear whether Uninterrupted, whose barbershop show has reportedly generated four million views since debuting last year, objects specifically to the Shop Talk name and logo or to the very idea of a taped conversation between sports figures in a barbershop. Via ESPN, here’s a portion of the letter Uninterrupted sent to Alabama:
“Your continued exploitation of ‘Shop Talk’ infringes ‘Uninterrupted’s’ copyright, trademark rights and other valuable intellectual property rights in ‘The Shop’ and significantly damages ‘Uninterrupted’s’ commercial prospects for ‘The Shop,'” the letter reads, in part.
Per ESPN, Uninterrupted’s letter says it will engage Alabama in a conversation before “rushing into legal proceedings.”
We’ll see how this works out, but it sounds as if Alabama’s Shop Talk might not be coming soon after all.