Helene David's Corner

Welcome to another installment of Helen David's Corner where we talk language.

'What's the deal with The Keg? I mean, don't they know they operate in Quebec? It's only right and respectful to call it Le Keg, is it not? What if French speakers think they're going for a keg of beer and not a piece of steak? Make it clear for us! It's good for business!'

'What's the deal with Dairy Queen? If not La Cremerie Dairy Queen dammit then go for La Reine Laiterie! It's good for business!'

If companies did not have the protection of trademark laws, this is pretty much what would happen here.


  1. In all fairness if a company based in France or Quebec Canada wanted to open a store in the U.S. or English-speaking Canadian provinces, or even in any Latin American country, the trademark laws could also protect their right to a French namesake for their establishment anywhere they open one of their establishments.
    As for those who don't understand French: They could always ask a manager what kind of service that business offers. Or read a newspaper/on-line article about the place. Reviews can be educational in that sense (although subject to the myopic views or the reviewer).

    1. Uhmmm ..."of the reviewer".

    2. Quebec trademark companies would not face language laws international companies face where language is concerned here. A Quebec company is free to open their store with an all-French name if it so chooses. A market will determine the rest; and as you point out, what does it take to go in and just ask away about the product or service? It would turn into a political hoopla like it does here - and that's my main issue. My issue is not whether companies should provide French descriptors (it doesn't hurt to do so though I don't think there should be any laws regulating it) my concern is constantly seeking trouble where there is none; plus it insults our intelligence.


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