OQLF targets activist for one-word violation?

Is this a new low for Quebec's language watchdog?

I didn't think the Office québécois de la langue française (OQLF) could sink any lower after targeting my small Anglo startup almost exactly one year after I broke "Pastagate" on this very blog (which led to the OQLF president stepping aside and reforms with their complaint system), but they've managed to outdo themselves once again.

CJAD 800 listener Todd Langseth told me this afternoon that he received a letter from the OQLF pointing to a violation on his website for a production company that does no business in Quebec. Technically, it is registered in Quebec, so that would fall under the OQLF's mandate. Technically.

However, the violation is over what appears to be one word! There's actually nothing on Langseth's company's site, apart from the name and some contact info. The word "Productions" is both above and below "Samuel Hain" to denote that the company's name is bilingual - but the word "Productions" is, of course, spelled the same way in both languages. Still a violation, apparently. So, the second "Productions" would be the problem, I guess. Perhaps it was "Los Angeles" or "Vancouver" that was the problem; it's not clear. Either way, it's wild.

We're not done yet. 

Langseth is the administrator on a Anglo activist Facebook group called "Down with Pauline Marois." It's quite popular, with over 6,200 'likes' (I have no opinion on the page, not that it matters). The violation came about, like mine, because of one single complaint from a "citizen" - likely a political opponent on social media (we'll never know who made the complaint because it's all secret and anonymous).

I'll ask again: Did Langseth's Anglo activism make him more, less or equally likely to be targeted by the OQLF? Is the OQLF being used as a political tool? I anxiously await the OQLF's justification for this disgusting display of vindictive, state-sponsored bullying. 

Share this article: