L’utilisation of too many English words est une insulte in France
French TV and radio regulator CSA revealed that the complaints they have been receiving lately follow one theme: the public is finding the increased use of English offensive.
According to a CSA survey and letters of complaint compiled by TV channels, the public is most offended by the ‘borrowing of English words and terms,’ ahead of inaccuracies and the use of vulgar expressions. France 2 TV channel’s Nicolas Jacobs adds that their English shows have received letters calling them a ‘traitor or a sell-out.’
In France, there are rules in place that forces the media industry to protect the French language. For example, there is a rule that says 40% of programmes on radios must be in French.
The CSA revealed that these strict rules are slowly being broken by media outlets and CSA has struggled to keep up. According to the regulator, aspects that make it more difficult for them to implement the pro-French language rule include French artists singing in English to attract international labels and the increased shift to alternative media YouTube and Daily Motion, which are not subject to French laws.
In the CSA report this week, it re-stated its mandate to ‘ensure the defence and the illustration of the French language’ in the media. However, the regulator said it is willing to adjust existing rules to reflect the changing times.