Is France Going To Ban Mentioning Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne And Cognac Online?

from the these-places-do-not-exist dept

You can understand why countries might have certain restrictions on alcohol advertising, but it would appear that France has gone a bit overboard. Based on existing laws (which pre-dated the internet) and recent court rulings, it's more or less illegal to mention alcohol brands online. That means if you're in France, you can't even visit the websites of certain wineries or beer companies, as they're afraid of getting targeted under the law. Heineken lost a lawsuit over this and had to block access to its website in France. A newspaper even got in trouble for (seriously) running an editorial about champagne. And sporting events with alcoholic sponsors are impossible. Logos of alcoholic brands are being removed from the uniforms of sports players, and even the rugby union's Heineken Cup is being referred to as the European Rugby trophy in France. The article notes that this ridiculous situation has some French comedians joking about how you won't be allowed to mention or visit such popular French regions as Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne and Cognac.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:24am

    Just a quick note to the anti-European trolls that often hang around:

    Yes, it's silly. Note that this is "France", not "Europe". European countries are still free to make a majority of rules themselves without interference from other nations, and many of us find this kind of thing silly. But, it's the French and they have their own way of doing things, as do the Spanish, Italians, etc. Hopefully comments here will be based on the sense, or lack thereof, of this decision rather than a blanket set of insults about Europeans as a whole.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Dennis Crow, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:38am

    Idiot Beliefs

    Yeah, France, wow...

    In North Carolina, you can't get the Bravo channel on cable, presumably because it's so 'gay.'

    Considering how bad narrow mindedness is everywhere, that whole anarchy thing seems workable.

    Good luck, humans!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Poster, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:42am

    Re: Idiot Beliefs

    Hey, I live in North Carolina, and I have Bravo on my cable lineup, so knock it off with that stereotyping crap.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Hulser, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:42am

    The will of the French people?

    I understand that France is a sovereign country and they can decide how they want to govern themselves, but by any objective standard, this situation is just ridiculous. Is there anyone out there, perhaps from France, that can give some insight into whether this is just bureaucracy run amok or whether it's truly the will of the French people? In other words, are there really a significant percentage of the French population that think they'll solve the problem of binge drinking if they can only prevent people from discussing alcohol or certain brands of alcohol online?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:44am

    Next Microsoft Commercial

    I am a Bravo. And I've been Stereotyped.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    dorpus, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:49am

    A model for Europe

    If we count atheism as zero, then Europe's predominant religion is Islam. Is this legislation not a model for their future?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Ted Higgins, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:49am

    Re: Next Microsoft Commercial

    Off topic from the original story... but I wonder if anyone from Microsoft saw this Apple ad from 2006 before they spent $300MM on "I'm a PC" campaign?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6vbKRQsq1k

    Oh the irony..

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Dave, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:56am

    Re: A model for Europe

    Actually, Christian monotheism is still the dominant religion in Europe. Where do you get your information from?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Hulser, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:57am

    All content is [alcohol] advertising and all [alcohol] advertising is content

    From the article...
    "Winemakers and other players in the drinks industry are fighting to avert a ban on advertising, sales and even vineyard websites that has been looming ever since a court ruled that the internet should be included in France's strict laws regarding alcohol advertising."

    Well, the good news is that the French government appears to agree with Mike's assertion that "All content is advertising and all advertising is content." The bad news of course is that the distinction between advertising and content is more than just an academic argument over semantics. Confusing the two terms can have real world negavite affects, such as an organization taking advantage of a poorly-worded law to advance their (most likely small minority) agenda.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Tabs, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 9:59am

    Ridiculous (sp?)

    Rant....

    Now this is worse than i thought even the french were capable of. i thought the uks overregulation was going a bit far. maybe i'll start backing up the WEB now so future generations can oneday see what it once was before idiotic busybodies took over.

    As a frank question to all, How does someone decide
    "hey i don't like what your doing (Near the children possibly) buddy, therefore i'm going to go out of my way to stop you doing it, and even go so far as to make it law that you can't do it"

    How do they have the moral code (Wankers) that makes them believe that they have the right to enforce their views on others.

    How is it possible that one human believes himself/herself able to make these decisions for the masses.

    I know its all for "The Greater good" but come the fuck on!

    Just because a number of drunks commit crime doesn't mean that you need to criminalise alcohol advertising, it just means that you need to think about how you police your society. remember that word........ society!!!


    Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah,

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Potato Head, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:02am

    Re:

    What do you expect from Europeans?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    johnny, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:02am

    at least the french have...

    one set of laws vis-a-vis alcohol for the whole country.
    Try dealing with 52+ sets of laws (states, DC, PR, etc) if
    you are producing or selling alcohol in the US or possessions.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Vincent Clement, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:11am

    Re: Re: A model for Europe

    He makes it up.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Dave, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:19am

    Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:19am

    Re: Re: A model for Europe

    Dorpus is one of the resident idiot trolls. He has zero knowledge on any of the subjects he decides to weigh in on, and usually outs himself as ignorant the second he types on his keyboard. Best to ignore him, although:

    @dorpus: If you decide to back your statement up with facts (unlikely), what do you mean by "Europe"? Do you mean the Eurozone, the European Union or continental Europe (including Russia and Switzerland)? Three totally different things, usually interchangeable in the minds of the clueless.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    Dave, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:19am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    That makes sense then. After all 87% of statistics are made up on the spot to prove a point that 92% of the time is wrong.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    dorpus, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re: A model for Europe

    >Actually, Christian monotheism is still the dominant religion in Europe. Where do you get your information from?

    Most of the "Christians" in Europe are only designated so by birth; they do not attend church or believe in God. Muslims in Europe are devout practitioners, sometimes even more so than Muslims in the Middle East. The Church has no significant social influence on the lives of Western Europeans, while mosques are central to Muslim lives.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Tony, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:26am

    Pride vs. money

    "...are there really a significant percentage of the French population that think they'll solve the problem of binge drinking if they can only prevent people from discussing alcohol or certain brands of alcohol online?"

    Funny how we've tried to restrict alcohol advertising in the US and it hasn't seemed to help.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:28am

    Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    ...and all the "Christians" in the US are regular churchgoers? Right...

    The proportions are about the same. If there's a bias towards Christianity in the US, it's because of the Mexican immigrants.

    Of course, that won't stop you bashing a place that you prove time and time again you have absolutely no direct knowledge of.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    dorpus, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    Don't forget the American South and Midwest, where churches play a major role in people's lives; surveys have consistently shown that the Bible is the most popular book in those regions.

    There is no comparable "Bible Belt" or "Religious Right" culture among Christians in Western Europe. When Western Europeans practice religion at all, it is either Buddhism, Wiccan, or Islam.

    Worldwide, religious people tend to have more children than non-religious people. Europe's white population is shrinking, while Muslims are multiplying.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Lucretious, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:45am

    France.....pfft.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    jhunter, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:49am

    Re: Idiot Beliefs

    I'm in TN and we get bravo... I even have LOGO on digital cable. TN is no worse the NC.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    hmmm, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:52am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    It has taken about 1300 years but they are finally going to conquer Europe :p

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    Bullshit.

    Sorry, but you seem to have a totally skewed perspective of the lives of Europeans, completely ignoring Roman Catholic life (esp. Italy, Ireland, Spain and Eastern Europe), the Anglican church, Orthodox and other sects. We have our regional sects over here, just as you do over there - either examine both areas as a whole or compare similar areas. I dare say a comparison between, say, Oregon and Poland, you'd see that the European state is more religious. Doesn't make it true as a whole, though.

    If you disagree, please post facts, bearing in mind the caveats above. Or, admit that you, like many Americans, haven't got a clue what you're talking about and get your European news from right-wing scaremongers like Fox News and the Daily Mail.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    Dave, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 10:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    Wow, every point you just made is demonstratively wrong.

    I'd show you studies and such but you'd never listen to them anyway.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    dorpus, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 11:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    I did specify Western Europe.

    The onus is on you to show me that Western European Christians are more devout than Muslims.

    I've noticed Europeans seem fixated on Fox News, though I rarely see or read it. Daily Mail is a European news source, not American; they seem like an anti-American news source, if anything.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 11:37am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    So? If I specified Eastern US, leaving out much of the Midwestern and Southern US, would that make any statement more valid about the US?

    Besides, you still have to actually back up your claims if you want to be taken notice of. More Wiccans practice religion in Western Europe than Christians? Please.

    The Daily Mail is a notoriously right-wing, scaremongering British paper that never misses a chance to print a scaremongering story, especially on the subjects of crime and immigration. Looking to that rag for real facts on these subjects is like looking to the National Enquirer for science updates. there are better sources, though unfortunately that's the source Americans seem to quote when discussing subjects like this.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    identicon
    NeoConBushSupporter, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 11:37am

    Mais Non . . .

    Typical cheese eatin’ surrender monkey stuff. No one should drink anything except wine and water and any speech to the contrary should be silenced. What’s next for the black list, mentioning homogenized dairy product? All you Kerry supporters pay attention, if you had one we would be speaking French, eating cheese full bacteria and apparently missing all the boobies in beer ads.


    VOTE McCain 2008 - He'll keep the boobies in beer ads!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Franssu, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 12:08pm

    Re: Pride vs. money

    This law was just to prevent alcohol advertising at a time where the net didn't exist. Instead of realizing it is now completely outdated, some lawmakers use it for their ridiculous agendas...

    That's usual from conservative nuts, they do this kind of stuff in about every country...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    identicon
    some random guy, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 12:12pm

    When was the last time you saw a cigarette advertisement on American television?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    icon
    Meaningless sniping (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:23pm

    Ticket sales skyrocket

    "this ridiculous situation has some French comedians joking about how you won't be allowed to mention or visit such popular French regions as Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne and Cognac."

    Wow. I'm booking travel to France to go on a comedy club tour. That material is fresh, in your face, and very risque. Place the Mensans that decided that this is comic gold right next to Larry the Cable Guy, and you've got a comic tour de force!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    bob, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:26pm

    Ha

    As a reminder to all you Europhiles, just as California is to the USA. France is to Europe.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:26pm

    Re: Mais Non . . .

    All you Kerry supporters pay attention, if you had one we would be speaking French, eating cheese full bacteria and apparently missing all the boobies in beer ads.
    Really? One? I've come to expect the "your/you're/there/they're/their/to/too" mistakes, but you sir win the award for dumbass of the day. PS. Boobs Beer 2008 :)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    dorpus, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:28pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    >So? If I specified Eastern US, leaving out much of the Midwestern and Southern US, would that make any statement more valid about the US?

    The Eastern US has the Amish, an ultraorthodox sect of Christianity that was banned in Europe.

    >Besides, you still have to actually back up your claims if you want to be taken notice of. More Wiccans practice religion in Western Europe than Christians? Please.

    How many Western Europeans decide they want to become Wiccans, as opposed to Western Europeans who decide they want to become devout Christians? Are there Western European youths who treat Christianity like it is a cool new thing?

    >The Daily Mail is a notoriously right-wing, scaremongering British paper that never misses a chance to print a scaremongering story, especially on the subjects of crime and immigration.

    So it is a European newspaper. How does this prove that Britain is somehow devoutly Christian?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    ROFFAL, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:28pm

    Re: Ha

    Fruits&Nuts::Cheese&Whine

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:43pm

    Re:

    Typical European response...

    (NOTE: humor)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    Mel, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 1:57pm

    Wow. Somebody could use a drink. (I think you know who you are).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Cixelsid, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 2:51pm

    Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    "The Church has no significant social influence on the lives of Western Europeans"

    No significant social influence? In Bayern, Germany (where I live) when registering for residence you are required to state your religion in order for the "church tax", that you are required to pay, to be filtered to the correct churches.

    "Most of the "Christians" in Europe are only designated so by birth; they do not attend church or believe in God."

    And who exactly gave you authority to judge whether European Christians believe in God or go to church enough?

    You haven't actually been to Europe, have you? Maybe not everyone are happy clappy bible thumping josephites like where you're from, but religion still plays a very big role in a lot of people's lives here. You'd know that if you actually spent some time in southern Germany and witnessed the catholic shrines interspaced every few kilometers, or visited any of the chapels that are the central focus of every little town.

    No, you'd rather just re-enforce the stereotype of the ignorant american, spouting garbage out his foodhole, about something he saw on television once.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 3:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A model for Europe

    "The Eastern US has the Amish, an ultraorthodox sect of Christianity that was banned in Europe."

    ...and Eastern Europe has a number of orthodox sects that you didn't address in your post. The point is that you picked a small proportion of the population you chose to attack (Europe, but only looked at the Western portion) and the particular sects you wanted to look at (not considering Jehova's Witnesses, Anglican, etc.) to make your point. If you looked at the complete data, your point is, well, pointless.

    "How many Western Europeans decide they want to become Wiccans, as opposed to Western Europeans who decide they want to become devout Christians? Are there Western European youths who treat Christianity like it is a cool new thing?"

    How many Americans decide they want to become Wiccans, as opposed to Americans who decide they want to become devout Christians? Are there American youths who treat Christianity like it is a cool new thing?

    A few and yes, in both cases. Either way, the Wiccans are a very small minority of either population. Irrelevant. There are probably more self-proclaimed "Jedis" than Wiccans, but that doesn't overshadow the various sects of Christianity that existed before your particular colony was established. There are many Catholics, Methodists, Presbyterian, Baptists and Evangelical Christians in the UK.

    "So it is a European newspaper. How does this prove that Britain is somehow devoutly Christian?"

    Britain is not devoutly Christian. Nor is the US. Nor most other countries. If you look at the hard data for the UK, it's approximately 70% Christian (of those who specified a religion), if you include the various denominations (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_UK, sorry for the Wiki link, it's late here...). You'll also notice that Wicca doesn't feature directly on those figures, while most of the minority religions are related to immigrant groups, just as they are in the US.

    Now, I know this has gone completely off-topic, and you're almost certainly trolling. I'm an atheist, former Catholic myself so read into that what you will. My point is that you seem woefully misinformed about what life is really like in Europe, and I (having lived in 5 different countries for 6 months or more, including the US) do have an idea of what life is like in other cultures. Even when I was living in the UK (my homeland), the Daily Mail rarely reflected what I was actually experiencing, so I find it very sad that it's the tome of choice for some people over there.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    PRMan, Sep 22nd, 2008 @ 3:53pm

    Devout Christians in Europe

    I'm pretty sure the large crowds that bands such as Delirious? and Matt Redman see over there (in England at least) are made up mostly of young Christians that are excited about their faith.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    NH, Sep 23rd, 2008 @ 4:42am

    Dorpus and PaulIT... just leave it... Dorpus you clearly have no idea what you are on about and PaulIT you have forgotten the maxim "Do not argue with the stupid, they will only bring you down to their level and beat you with their stupidity."

    With regards to the ACTUAL topic, this is hardly surprising given the Franch authorities have a somewhat backward view overall of online issues and something that is hardly likely to change anytime soon.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Dave, Sep 23rd, 2008 @ 7:06am

    Re [10]: A model for Europe

    Here's a link to the religious breakdown of all the countries in the world with a general census. It's an excel table.

    http://unstats.un.org/unsd/demographic/products/dyb/dybcensus/V2_table6.xls

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Ric Erickson, Sep 23rd, 2008 @ 3:21pm

    French Ban Booze Online

    It's news to me. Curious, I took a look at
    http://www.franceway.com/regions/provence/pastis/pastisfr.htm
    and this is a Website that seems to be promoting a brand of pastis, which is definitely booze. If it's not booze then it isn't pastis. It is true that the anti-booze crowd is getting meaner to teen-age drinking, with the latest proposal being for young drivers to have their licence cancelled if caught with booze during the first three years. They kicked smokers out of bars this year and so far bar and cafe closures have increased by 35%. Pretty soon we'll have to take our morning espresso at McDo's.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This