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[Andrew found a small disclaimer in a Microsoft competition which said if a Canadian won, he/she would have to pass a maths test before taking the prize. Apparently it's some odd Canadian law. He then made an off-colour remark about seal clubbing]

Microsoft suggests Canadians can't add



I found Andrew Thomas' comment in the article "Microsoft suggests Canadians can't add" about Canadians to be inflammatory and offensive. "Delving further into the small print, we find that in the event a Canadian entrant is selected, he or she will be required to answer a mathematical skill testing question as a prerequisite to being declared a winner.



This seems a tad unfair. Why not ask them to demonstrate something they know about, such as their clubbing prowess? (baby seal supplied)." For your info, in Canada, you cannot accept prizes from ANY contests without answering a skill testing question of some sort (the questions don't have to be difficult though). It's one of our funnier laws I will admit. This gibe is not why I'm writing this. You make us sound like barbarians with the second part.

Most Canadians hated the slaughter of seals and the bad press associated with it from animal rights groups and the practice was eventually outlawed. However, the fact the seals were eating so much fish that it put our fishermen in a bad position of competing with their uncontrolled population meant that the government relaxed it's restrictions again. Most Canadians do not agree with this (myself being one of them) so it's pretty harsh that you would post such a low-handed comment. I hope that, for the sake of tact, you don't publish rubbish like this in the future especially if you want to keep Canadians like myself reading your site. Normally, I love the Register and jokes, cheap shots are fine, but this kind of comment is just too much (ergo, this letter to you).

Regards,

Jim Dow



As a seal flipper pie eating Quebecois, I found your article on Microsoft ME highly intelligible. Canadian lotteries also require a skill testing question to claim your prize by adding all numbers chosen for the draw, cubing the total and finding the nearest prime number. This is to keep up the supply of cheap knowledge based workers for our American corporate benefactors.



The reason Quebec is not included in the Microsoft question is that the question as set by the Bureau de Lotteries would be: How long until Quebec is independent? Microsoft wanted the answer to be 2 years, while even the earliest the sovereignistes was 5 years.

Thanks,

Ian McKirdy



You have mention in your article that Québec was out of the contest and that Canadians were required to answer a math question but perhaps you don't know why...



Québec's legislation forces anybody to offer something in Québec to offer it in French. They can offer it in English or in Swaheli also, but they have to translate it in French also, so I guess Microsoft didn't want to waste time (and money) translating it. As for the mathematical question, in Canada you cannot win something *just like that*. Any contest that can make you win something for free has to have some sort of test, usually a mathematical question (and usually a very dumb one. I once saw 1+1...) Oh, and they must not be tied to buying a product. So if you can win something eating a chocolate bar (on the inside of the wrapper for instance), you'll have to answer a mathematical question to claim your prize and you don't have to buy the chocolate bar either, but then you would have to write to the company with a self addressed envelope asking for an empty chocolate wrapper... I guess they never received any such claims, but they have to be ready for them.

As for the seal clubbing, I guess this is your sense of humor once again. By the way, do you know this one?

...This baby seal walks into a bar and the bartender says: "What'll ya have..." The seal says, "Anything but a Canadian Club..."

Oh well.

Keep up the good work

Pol Ralos



Real Canadians do not club baby seals! That's what Newfies do! (residents of the province of


Newfoundland ) Real Canadians club their wives or door-to-door salepeople! Sometimes they get


clubbed by their wives (or worse!).



Real Canadians never 'fox hunt' like those panzie English. Those 'fox hunt' outfits are just too silly! And I think MS is right. Best to make sure those clowns know how to add before letting them in the door. No one expects Americans to know anything. Canadians are held to a higher standard! (now, where'd I put my club?)



Just to clarify, the simple math problem required to claim prizes in Canada is the result of a strange Canadian law. Its only purpose is to make sure that it's actually a Canadian claiming the prize, and not a Yankee or a Brit masquerading as such.



BTW - under the right light, Brits look a LOT like baby seals.

Matthew, Defender of Canada



In the words of one of our home grown Canadian nutcases, "Suck Me Arse".



later,
Mike George

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

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