Fans of The Office know the show’s writers have masterfully created some of the most brilliant on-screen comedy, but not everyone is aware of just how much effort went into each and every detail at Dunder Mifflin.
In a Season 2 episode titled “The Injury,” for example, fans may recall Pam sitting at her desk fiddling with a mysterious MP3 player. Her fiancé Roy, who promised to get her a video iPod for Christmas, bought her some random clunky piece of tech instead. Classic Roy.
While Pam was attempting to load songs on the device in the middle of the workday, a concussed Dwight approached her, admired the mystery tech, and asked, “Oh man, is that a Prism DuroSport?” Pam confirmed, and Dwight proceeded to explain to her that the Prism DuroSport is “like an iPod, only better, cause they’re chunkier and more solid.” Later on in the episode he put a “totally indestructible” cover on the MP3 player and had Pam toss it across the room to prove its strength.
Readers: If you have no idea what a Prism DuroSport is, that’s because the MP3 player isn’t real. Though durosport.com, a website all about the fake tech product, may have you thinking otherwise.
Turns out the writers of The Office — which included Mindy Kaling, BJ Novak, Paul Lieberstein, Greg Daniels, Michael Schur, and more — got so invested in Pam’s fake MP3 player that they not only created an entire tech website dedicated to the Prism DuroSport, but they also reportedly made a fake review site called Medialoper and reviewed the gadget.
On the latest episode of the Office Ladies podcast, former co-stars Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey revealed that the writers set up the parody website for the fake MP3 player, which is honestly pretty impressive.
“The fake website is called durosport.com. It’s still up. You can still find it,” Kinsey told Fischer. When a confused Fischer asked who made the website, Kinsey said, “Our writers. Clearly they were just having some fun.”
The DuroSport Electronics homepage (an old WordPress blog) prominently displays a ridiculous photo composite of the Prism 6000 and some cowboys on horseback beside the words, “Finally, a portable media player tough enough for the wild west!”
The fake brand, which was founded by Oleg Tarlev of Moldova in 1962, claims to be responsible for 52.25 years of innovation and brags about its “merciless engineering culture,” “groundbreaking products,” and “unparalleled support.” The website gives visitors access to a blog full of absurd posts and an about us page that displays a concerning mission statement, along with news, product, and support pages. It even links to a very extensive holiday schedule.
In addition to Pam’s Prism DuroSport, the website’s product page features other pieces of groundbreaking fake tech. There’s the the world’s first remote controlled remote control, an “” that lets people convert their iTunes songs to cassette tapes, and a battery-powered charger that can only be charged by another battery-powered charger.
It’s a close contest for sure, but after perusing the site I’d have to say my favorite DuroSport Electronics Corporation product is , an “aerosol e-book enhancer” that you can spray to make your electronic reading device smell like an authentic paper book. It comes in five scents!
According to Kinsey, The Office writers didn’t just make the hilariously detailed durosport.com. She also claims they took the joke a step further and created this scathing and lengthy parody product review: “The Prism DuroSport 6000 – Worst Digital Audio Player Ever!” The review was posted on April 1, 2006, months after “The Injury” episode first aired on Jan. 12, 2006.
“At the end of this horrible review there is a comment board and they made fake comments, which is so funny. And the very very last fake comment is by Schilcote,” Kinsey explains. The comment, which was posted on Oct. 4, 2009, reads: “To anyone who doesn’t know, DuroSport is infact a joke. It was created by the writers of The Office. Check the WHOIS, it went up soon after the episode aired.”
Note: The WHOIS information, a database that records which businesses or person registers domains, has since been redacted.
“Our writers were really having a good time with this,” Kinsey said, but she did clarify that the piece of tech used in the episode was actually a real product — a type of Creative Zen MP3 player.
“I mean Phil Shea had to hand me something so I could really scroll, and it really plugged into my computer,” Fischer said. “I froze the image at 5:47 and I compared it to an image of a Creative Zen… so I guess if you want to own one they have them on eBay.”
If you’re looking to pass an hour or two of time at your own desk job, we highly recommend rewatching “The Injury” and doing a deep dive into the weird and wonderful online presence of DuroSport. The Office writers did not disappoint.
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