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No Name, No Claim

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Anything not specified as personal property is public property.

This work is a proposed Trope, Tropers can vote and offer feedback in the comments section below.
Proposed By:
MHarrington on Oct 10th 2017 at 11:17:43 PM
Last Edited By:
AndreaTx on Oct 14th 2017 at 12:17:45 PM
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope

Two people squabble over who has priority rights to use something. Person A might be sitting on a chair, for example, then leave for whatever reason. In Person A's absence, Person B will come along, claim the chair for him or herself and invoke this trope as an excuse not to give up their newly acquired seat (PERSON A: "That's my chair!" PERSON B: "I don't see your name on it."). May or may not result in literally putting their name on something to preclude anyone from using the item again without permission. Often commonplace with children in fiction, but Truth in Television, too. May also extend to adults in comedic situations such as lunches in the workplace refrigerator.


Examples:

Live-Action TV

  • Newsradio has a Double Subversion. After Max Lewis is introduced, he casually takes a sandwich out of someone else's lunch bag and starts eating it. Dave tells him that it's his lunch and Max tells him "I don't see your name on it." Dave turns the bag around to show it does have his name on it and Max tells him "I still don't see your name on the actual sandwich."

Western Animation

  • In the Simpsons episode "Lisa's First Word", this is the exchange between Bart and Lisa for control of the rug.
    Marge: Bart, don't write on the rug.
  • This is the basis for the Dexter's Laboratory episode, "Labels". Tired of Dee Dee refusing to share space in the house with him, on the grounds that she didn't see his name on anything, Dexter decides to do just that: namely, label his name on EVERYTHING in the house so that Dee Dee will stop bugging him about it. This is taken Up to Eleven, as they engage in a labeling war that makes a mess of the house.
  • All Grown Up!: Subverted in an encounter between Angelica and Savanna. The scenario starts as usual, with Savanna claiming Angelica was in her seat, and the typical "It's not like your name is on it" response is uttered. Only for Savanna to point out her name is actually written on it... in gold lettering, no less. Angelica is suitably impressed.
  • Red vs. Blue: During an all-out gunfight between insane red and blue characters (not the main characters), two of them were firing at each other with a rock between them. Someone else with a rocket launcher came behind one of them and blew him up, and his teammate shouted "You stole my kill!" His response: "Didn't see your name on it!"

Feedback: 20 replies

Oct 11th 2017 at 7:22:24 AM

^ Unfortunately true, which is too bad—-I'd be giving a Red vs. Blue example right now if it weren't!

Oct 11th 2017 at 8:14:44 AM

I am sure the title can be fixed. This is certainly a trope.

Oct 11th 2017 at 1:01:03 PM

What can this trope be named to, if not a stock phrase?

Oct 11th 2017 at 1:55:01 PM

For the title: perhaps "No Name On It" Justification?

Oct 11th 2017 at 2:15:50 PM

Possible title ideas: Unlabeled Means Unclaimed Not Marked As Yours Claims Must Be In Writing

Oct 11th 2017 at 2:17:43 PM

Darn. There were supposed to be like breaks in that.

Unlabeled Means Unclaimed,

Not Marked As Yours,

Claims Must Be In Writing

Oct 11th 2017 at 4:30:01 PM

^ You can edit your comments. The edit button doesn't show up right after posting, you have to refresh.

Oct 11th 2017 at 7:04:50 PM

I hope this can be repaired. I can think of an example. Although maybe the stock phrase can be referenced in the description.

Oct 12th 2017 at 7:57:49 AM

You're right...this could be a trope, and I can think of a couple more examples. Claim Of Entitlement might be another good name; I'm thinking of these examples:

  • Rocky And Bullwinkle: There was a sketch where a timid rabbit was able to frighten other Funny Animal characters by wobbling his ears, and used this to prove his toughness when he told a gun-toting wolfish character "You are sitting in my chair!"

  • Red Vs Blue: During an all-out gunfight between insane red and blue characters (not the main characters), two of them were firing at each other with a rock between them. Someone else with a rocket launcher came behind one of them and blew him up, and his teammate shouted "You stole my kill!" His response: "Didn't see your name on it!"

Oct 12th 2017 at 8:42:06 AM

  • All Grown Up: Subverted in an encounter between Angelica and Savanna. The scenario starts as usual, with Savanna claiming Angelica was in her seat, and the typical "It's not like your name is on it" response is uttered. Only for Savanna to point out her name is actually written on it... in gold lettering, no less. Angelica is suitably impressed.

Oct 12th 2017 at 3:32:21 PM

  • This was the theme of an episode of Dexters Laboratory, where Dexter and Dee Dee use label guns on everything.

Oct 12th 2017 at 3:32:25 PM

  • This was the theme of an episode of Dexters Laboratory, where Dexter and Dee Dee use label guns on everything.

Oct 12th 2017 at 8:07:46 PM

"No Name, No Claim" is pretty good.

Oct 12th 2017 at 10:09:32 PM

"No Name, No Claim" sounds good.

Oct 12th 2017 at 11:16:05 PM

I tinkered around with it. What do you guys think?

Oct 14th 2017 at 12:11:27 AM

^ It's not good. It's better.

Oct 14th 2017 at 7:11:10 AM

Live Action Television

  • Newsradio has a Double Subversion. After Max Lewis is introduced, he casually takes a sandwich out of someone else's lunch bag and starts eating it. Dave tells him that it's his lunch and Max tells him "I don't see your name on it." Dave turns the bag around to show it does have his name on it and Max tells him "I still don't see your name on the actual sandwich."

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