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The French have unveiled plans to stop the tainting of their tongue by banning email. Politicians who once tried to make phrases like le weekend and le sandwich as unsavoury as frogs legs are at it again. This time they want to force the French civil service to stop using cyber-Anglicisms. Email will be replaced for bureaucrats by courrier electronique (electronic letter), while a start-up will be known officially as a jeune pousse (young plant). Other English language terms deemed too dangerous are stock option, which will become une option sur titre, and media magnet, un aimant des medias. But the changes, which follow similar attempts by the government to curtail the use of English in modern French speak, seem doomed by the government's own admission, today's Times reported. "The State can't impose terms on other people," admitted Jean Saint-Geours, head of the ministry of finance's terminology committee. "But it is desirable that the whole country should talk the same language." It seemed to slip his mind that the whole world should be speaking the same Oueb language. ® Related stories: French language discovers email

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