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City of Vancouver protocol guide: How to behave during the Olympics

January 26th, 2010 · 12 Comments

Oh, everyone was going gaga today over the city’s protocol guide (or as they spell it in their doc header, protocal guide — meaning first (proto) and heat (cal), I guess), as though we would all be fined by the TransLink police if we didn’t follow the rules.

Of course, it’s the kind of thing that’s distributed all the time at international events, intended for those who have to deal with the deputy emperor of Limpopo or the viscount of Lilliput and the like. I append the city link here for those of you who feel you may be called upon to interact with people of this caliber.

But while I think it’s much fuss about nothing, here’s a game for all of us: How about if we make up rules for real and likely interactions between Vancouverites and visitors? Like: When passing a joint to an international visitor who is not familiar with the open use of illegal drugs in Vancouver, the proper etiquette is to ask if the visitor would prefer to smoke in a more private place than the BC Place opening ceremonies.


 Go to it.

Categories: Uncategorized

  • J R Wares

    I did not take the time to check the guide but did the city protocol include a ” how to” for our unfortunate fellow citizens who panhandle on our street corners ?

    Or the appropriate term of address by the panhandlers towards our wealthier citizens ? If anything will define the city of Vancouver it will not be the courteous response towards our guests but the image created by the cries for help from the street people.

    Any answers?

  • Bill Lee

    They do allow complaining about the weather, but not twittering on your phone while ‘on duty’
    Pierre Martineau had a funny on Tj-CB last night comparing socks (argyle vs black) shoes (black, battered brown) etc with rumpled fashionista David Cadman. And the various catch-lines allowed “No Problem” vs Je vous en prie.

    I think the worst breach of protocol would be to compare the ordinality of MEC membership numbers.
    It is all about the bowing to the elites that sets people off on the CBC long list of comments.

  • Higgins

    The middle finger salute is valid in any situation and it means almost the same in any culture (Ok, there are slight variations here and there).
    It goes waaay back in history.
    Be it the “straight finger” “read through the lines” “the telescopic” “the fishing rod”…use it with love and affection.
    And remember, smile gently!
    Higgins | January 26, 2010 7:12 PM | Reply

  • “Pot Protocol” – I love it, fabula . . . .

  • Rick

    If your wait time for a public washroom in the downtown core exceeds thirty minutes it is acceptable to tap your foot but only to a cheery beat. We also suggest engaging visitors who may be in the queue with you in polite conversation about how your life has been enriched by Olympic sponsorship deals.

  • who cares?

    Ultimately, who cares about this story? City staff need training in many things and this is one area that was long overdue. I would rather that they know how to behave to anybody than be their “normal” miserable selves which a number of them are. Let’s see how they represent our City!

  • who cares?

    Oh yeah..was also going to mention. They could have made some good $$ for the City by using this material as training for those in say, the hospitality industry. NOw that they had to publish the manual (what for??), they’ve blown that potential idea away…

  • Patti

    If your mother didn’t teach you or you haven’t learned by now how to dress and behave properly in public maybe it’s time you read the Protocol Guideline and use it in your daily activities. It’s free advice and you just might find it useful.
    The world stage will appreciate your integrity!
    After all you are the gracious hosts of the Olympics, Vancouverites!

  • geo

    who cares?

    You would have the city teach the hospitality industry proper protocol, manners, dress, etc. by stealth?

    Why do I suspect that no matter where you go the service you receive from assorted clerks, waiters, shop-keepers, attendants, associates, et al, is never good enough for you.

    Maybe you should practice “smiling gently” at complete strangers for a while.


  • Jonathon Wilcke

    I wish the City of Vancouver would produce a guide that teaches people how to drive.

  • Patti Craig

    Howdy Vancouver! Good luck with all the Olympic festivities. We, here on the East Coast, just naturally know how to behave in public and private. No need for protocol manuals… learned at an early age that staring is impolite, and that looking someone in the eye for an extended period of time can be perceived as threatening. The only “Body to Body Check” happens at the bar. No need for our government to mandate our behaviour. Maybe your stiff city officials should visit Nova Scotia and partake in a good old fashioned ceilidh, that is Gaelic for party or gathering…… “Come to Life” is our motto.

    Wheels Up!