Cupcake shop not crazy about OQLF

Posted By: Shuyee Lee · 1/23/2013 1:23:00 PM

A West Island cupcake shop is the latest small business to have drawn the ire of the province's language watchdog.

For six years, Tanya Bouzaglo has been known as the Crazy About Cupcakes lady, selling her culinary creations from her Pointe Claire village storefront.

But last April, she appeared on the OQLF's radar and a few months later she was hit with four violations, including her company's name which would have to include a French descriptor such as pâtisserie to make it conform.

"Even if I'm adding in the word pâtisserie, people know me as Crazy about Cupcakes, not anything else, so it's going to change somewhat for sure," Bouzaglo told CJAD 800 News.

This week, an official paid her a visit with details about helping her to pay for the changes but they'll only pay for 3/4 of certain costs such as the logo design.

"Having to reprint all my business cards, even though I have 1000s sitting here in stock, my boxes, my stickers, I have to get rid of that and start fresh. That's what's a pain," Bouzaglo said.

"It's upsetting, it's discouraging, it's a big waste of time for me, and money."

Images: Crazy About Cupcakes

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  1. Seven posted on 01/23/2013 01:57 PM
    New on the menu:

    Poison Cupcakes - for the QOLF only. What a CRAZY idea.
  2. Skibble5150 posted on 01/23/2013 02:44 PM
    Just print out a piece of paper in 14 point type that includes the word PATISSERIE and glue it to the sign.

    Total cost is 12¢.

    Then you can ignore the language nazis.
  3. Umaga posted on 01/23/2013 03:27 PM
    " Oh my what an outrage " the Angry Anglos will cry " What a horrible waste of money " they'll mutter in the food court of the Cavendish Mall . Yet no one is shocked that more than thirty years after the introduction of the very popular Bill 101 there are still people so ignorant or naive that they continue to post signs in English . I'm outraged that the government is actually considering paying this nitwit to rectify her shoddy advertising .
    1. LMAO posted on 01/24/2013 07:04 AM
      @Umaga How did you come to the conclusion that the Bill 101 was popular? It is laughable that after 30 years the OQLF has not found all the businesses that are breaking the law. It just shows the inefficiency of these fools or maybe it just goes to show they have a cosy job and don't have to do any real work to collect their fat pension cheques. I guess the economy here is booming at such a rate it took 6 YEARS for one of the OQLF officers to notice or did someone call them and wake them up so they had to go do something that day?
      The sad truth for Francophone Quebecors Umago, is that the majority of English speaking Quebecors have learned to speak and write in French and are sitting at the front line of job interviews and getting the better paid jobs too.
      They also have the choice to leave and work elsewhere in the world too.
      I'm surpised the hard line PQ are allowing their leader to visit a free country like Switzerland in case she realizes that speaking more then one language could be a benefit to Quebecors. Or maybe she is just checking out the finishing schools so her children can finish their education there?
    2. sk posted on 01/24/2013 08:01 AM
      @Umaga its amazing to see a "troll" on a news website, consequently umaga nobody thinks your oppinion is worth anymore than a pile of paulines poop. I trust your goal is simply to annoy anglos.....good job its working. you sure have lots of time to post I guess you have free internet in your stm booth?.
  4. Rudolph S posted on 01/23/2013 06:35 PM
    in todays radio news, it said, that the OLF report against the Cup Cake Lady mentionned, that someone spoke english in her store.... OMG what a terrible crime this lady had permittet on her place of business.... I hope all the shady characters that were mentioned during the Charbonneau crime enquiry stole , embesselt and laundered all that money en francasais ... if not they are really deep in Sh...... with the OLF..ers
    while Maroise is trying to drum -up some investments in Switzerland , they better not hear what kind of nonsense is going on in her petit Quebec....
  5. error posted on 01/24/2013 10:09 AM
    I have to save that I agree with Umaga, though am not a 'Quebecois' hardliner. Ignorance does not excuse breaking of laws. This is a known (read: popular) law and is known (and yes, hated) by many people. This is not a law which is hidden in the annals of our society. This is the point that is being missed, the business owner's responsibility to manage their business within the law. What if she had been 'unaware' or unwilling to abide by food safety laws? People would take to arms.

    I am not agreeing with Bill 101, I don't think it serves the purpose and I believe it infrignes upon our freedoms. I do however believe that by living in this society you implicitely agree with its' laws, until a point in time where these are changed (i.e. abide but don't agree).
    1. error posted on 02/08/2013 03:51 PM
      @error The problem here is that because the Office says it's illegal does NOT mean it is. Bill 101 does NOT require the use of descriptors. It isn't against the law, so she's doing nothing wrong.

      How about we all become educated on what Bill 101 actually says rather than taking the Office's word for it since they are obviously anything but an objective 3rd party.
  6. john posted on 01/24/2013 10:13 AM
    As mush as I think that the OQLF is nothing short of the language nazis I also think that the owner of this store has known since day one of opening the business she was in direct violation of the language codes.

    You got caught and now have to comply. At a cost to the public (through taxes) no less. I, for one, will not take the side of the business in this case.

    By the way, you can get 5000 business cards printed here in Montreal for $108. Subtract what we the public are paying for it (3/4) then it will cost the owner $27. Not that much of a pain in my books 'crazy about cupcakes' lady!
    1. Marc posted on 01/27/2013 04:50 PM
      @john o, what about the store sign, the cake
      boxes, bags, information pamphlets..
      go back to buisness school.
    2. Mo posted on 02/08/2013 03:52 PM
      @john You're right except for the FACT that Bill 101 does NOT require descriptors in French. Do not pass GO, do not collect $200.
  7. nette posted on 01/24/2013 01:08 PM
    Really, i am getting confused about these cases of language laws. Is it not when you apply for business, the applicant states the name of the business to be, how come it was approved, if it was CRAZY ABOUT CUPCAKES!!!! why they did not require to have it in french or "FRENCH/ENGLISH" combined!!!
  8. Jill posted on 01/24/2013 02:09 PM
    I agree with John. Why is it that this person gets taxpayers money and all the business owners who complied with the law payed their advertising materials from their pockets and they logos get published here only if they pay CJAD for the advertising. Something is wrong with that picture....
  9. Willem B posted on 01/25/2013 07:39 AM
    All right, this one's her fault. Language legislation's been around since 1977. You can't just go flouting the law so egregiously. Nice and cute name but she had the choice of naming her company and at least TRY to make it look like you're following the law. You don't need the witch-hunters on your tail.

    This one is self-inflicted. If you want your own business with that name, you can't do it in Quebec. That's been common knowledge for 36+ years.

    No, I don't say that the language laws are right - I think they're absurd. But they're the law. It's like someone moving to Dorval and then complaining about airplane noise.

    Know where you are.
    1. LMAO posted on 01/25/2013 10:41 AM
      @Willem B If you want fairness and co-operation within the language laws then i agree with you. My problem is why are the STM and other public services allowed to use only the parts of bill 101 that suit them. The bill clearly states the use of bi-lingual employees for the service they provide is acceptable. If the bill is to be applied then lets see it applied fairly throughout the province in all situations. When that is the case the business owner here would have no right to complain. Until them i think she has a good case to flout the law as it is clearly not applied in all circumstances.
    2. Anna posted on 01/25/2013 10:43 AM
      @Willem B I agree with the individuals who feel she has been negligent in her responsibilities as a business owner. We as taxpayers should not subsidize her costs for reprinting a business sign.
      Adding the word "patisserie" in front of her English words Crazy about Cupcakes would actually increase her client base as it would more clearly indicate what type of business she is in and it makes her business more marketable, more prestigious. As for the costs of reprinting cards and stickers-that is laughable, it costs peanuts to reprint as one other commenter pointed out, approximately $100.00.
      Her major worry should be if one day the OQLF walks into her store and tells her to stop serving in English. Be bilingual, serve in 2 languages and put up a sign that meets the standards of our laws. Point finale.
  10. AbsurdityIs posted on 01/25/2013 01:29 PM
    If the name is a registered trademark, 101 does not apply.<---Period

    Remember when OQLF (OLF at the time) tried to force Mcdonald's to drop the apostrophe and s because it wasn't french? Mcdonald's pretty much told them where they could stick it and if they wanted to play hardball they would close all McD's in Quebec over it.
    They are also trying to force Canadian Tire, Metro groceries stores and many others do to the same thing, and all of them are refusing to budge on it.
    This owners only problem is she isn't a huge multi-national corporation, so the OQLF assumes they can make any small/medium bussiness owner bend over and take it because they don't have the endless resources or huge legal departments to fight them.

    The OQLF often overshoots their mandate, and this is purely a case of that.
    I say fight it. They won't go to court over it, they never do.

    They should just rename the OQLF to something more appropriate, like the Office Quebecois du Harcèlement des Anglophones.
  11. Tom posted on 01/25/2013 05:19 PM
    I LOVE that my tax money is being used to take down such evil places, instead of fixing our hospitals, roads and bridges. Keep up the good work, Office de la Useless People.
  12. Jack Locke posted on 01/26/2013 05:33 PM
    Burn the Charter
  13. scooby posted on 01/30/2013 06:35 AM
    She should have know better....the law has been around long enough...how did she think she would go under the radar and not get called on it with an english company name....now our tax payer dollars goes to fixing her own mess.....
    1. mo posted on 02/08/2013 04:06 PM
      @scooby Bill 101 does not require French descriptors. That's why Mr. Curzi presented his version of an updated Bill 101 (Bill 593) to the Quebec National Assembly which included this: Chapter 7 Article 86
      All companies must use a French name or in the case of a legal trademark, a French descriptor must be added

      (A complete and TOTAL admission that the present act has no requirement for descriptors.)
  14. Natalie Beauchamp posted on 02/09/2013 10:59 AM
    If she has been warned since last year, I find it hard to believe that she still has thousands of business cards, stickers, boxes... As a general rule small business owners buy smaller quantities of these items due to a lack of storage space.

    If she did have more printed since she was warned then i think it is very disrespectful to not have mad the modifications on what she did have printed.

    I think she should accept the offer of the OQLF and have the stationary reprinted.

    When one decided to open a company in Quebec, we all know of the language laws agree with them or not, the laws are there and if you chose not to follow them, then be prepared to deal with the fines.
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