EasyJet Founder to Sue Netflix Over TV Series Name

Oct 1, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

The founder of the budget airline easyJet is set to file a lawsuit against Netflix in a trademark dispute over a series on the streaming service called “Easy.”

“I think this is a case of typically arrogant behavior by a very large American tech company who never bothered to check what legal rights other companies have outside the US,” Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the owner of easyGroup, said in a statement.

Courtesy easyJet
Image courtesy of easyJet.

According to easyGroup’s legal claim, to be filed “in the next few days,” according to spokesman Richard Shackleton, the London-based company is seeking an injunction to bar Netflix from using the series name in the European Union and to change its name for all future and previously broadcast episodes.

Haji-Ioannou said that, among other things, the logo for the series too closely resembles that of easyJet’s and easyGroup’s logos, spelled with a lowercase “e” and against a bright orange background. The series uses a lowercase, serif typeface for its title. In the premiere episode, the word “easy” was capitalized and sans serif but against a bright orange background.

easy_netflix
Image courtesy of Netflix.

The series, a half-hour comedy-drama anthology about the lives of mostly hapless Chicagoans, was renewed in August for a third and final season. By phone, Shackleton said easyGroup hadn’t complained to Netflix earlier because it only found out about the series recently — Netflix, he said, hadn’t done its due diligence about the trademark in Europe.

The company licenses its name to a large number of companies, including easyHotel, easyBus, easyVan, easyCoffee, easyStorage, easyFoodstore and easyOffice, and is taking the legal action primarily to prevent its brand name from being diluted, Shackleton said.

“The problem is once you let ‘easy’ go, there’s the danger that people will just start to come in and take the name,” he said. “It’s very unlikely that we’ll be getting into television anytime soon, but there’s a principle at stake. If you want to use the easy name, you have to come and ask us first.”

Earlier this year, easyGroup filed claims against airlines in Honduras and Colombia called Easy Sky and Easyfly, respectively.

Netflix didn’t respond to a request for comment by publication, but earlier said in a statement that Haji-Ioannou’s charges were spurious.

“Viewers can tell the difference between a show they watch and a plane they fly in,” the California-based company said.

2018 TPG Award Winner: Mid-Tier Card of the Year
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.74% - 24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.