Friday, April 3, 2009


Like their amis across the pond, our French speaking neighbors to the north are desperately trying to retain their language. They have recently instituted French language rules for video games.

French language rules on video games come into force today prohibiting the sale of new English-only video games in Quebec if a French version is available.

Of course, the business world is concerned that the new law will lead to lost profits and bankruptcy.

Ronnie Rondeau, co-owner of the eight Game Buzz stores around Montreal, said he even fears bankruptcy.

"I'm afraid it's going to cost me my business," Rondeau said. "If it really was going to make a difference, I'd be for it, but only a small number of people want to play in French. The rest don't care.

Raffy Boudjikanian, who writes a gaming column for the West Island Chronicle, agrees. "Why am I going to wait for five more months when the next big game is right there in Plattsburg?"

This is typical French behavior. Who cares about crippling someone's business, as long as they're speaking French in the unemployment lines.

France has been battling the encroachment of the English language for years.

French was the lingua franca in diplomatic circles from the 17th Century until the post-World War I period when it was usurped by English. Up until very recently, French and English were the only two languages on passports. Presently, the UN Secretariat uses two working languages, English and French, and French is still the official language of the Universal Postal Union.

Regardless, native French speakers are fighting an uphill battle. In 2005, French was the 18th most practiced language when taking into account native speakers. Considering France's incredibly low birth rate, la langue fran├žaise is certain to drop even further down the importance scale.


  1. french or quebecois? those frogs don't even consider swiss real euros.

  2. To me they're all French. The behavior is the same.