How to Spot a Canadian

Tracking down Canadians one toque at a time.

About this Site...

Canadians are a tricky people to distinguish. They are often able to blend into a society and appear to be American, British, French or any other number of nationalities. This site will provide you with some tips and tricks to help you recognize a Canadian no matter where you are.


This site is for entertainment purposes only. "How to Spot a Canadian" is filled with humour, satire, hyperbole, parody and sarcasm. All statements here should be taken with a grain of salt or a bottle of maple syrup, whatever the case may be.

Their Goverment Mandates They Listen to Nickelback

Canadians are very protective of their culture. They look to the south and they see the giant consumer force that is the United States and Canadians are afraid of losing their identities. It doesn't help that the US frequently jokes that Canada is the 51st State. That sort of line cuts Canadians to their frozen, maple syrup-covered bones.

So Canadians are very quick to point out that they are not American.

In an effort to keep the American promotional beast at bay, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) introduced Canadian content legislation. This means that Canadian television and radio stations must air "a certain percentage of content that was at least partly written, produced, presented, or otherwise contributed to by persons from Canada." [Wikipedia]

And that's how the world got Nickelback. writes:
January 2000 saw the arrival of The State, Nickelback's second independent release. Issued at a time in which Canadian content requirements were increased (and, accordingly, local radio stations had begun to desperately seek out homegrown product), the album fared very well on indie charts.

So Canadian content works, right? It took an indie band that had little hope of succeeding in the competitive US music market and it made them stars.

Unfortunately that rarely happens.

Radio stations are lazy. Yes, they could put their ears to the ground, get a sense of what is popular in small Canadian clubs, search, find good independent Canadian music and air it. They could also play Nickelback 72 times a day.

Guess which one they do.

This is especially true in this day and age when radio is a dying medium. Stations do not have the time or money to find the next big thing. So Canadians hear Nickelback, Barenaked Ladies, Avril Lavigne and the Tragically Hip until their ears bleed. No one wants to take a chance on a new band when a sure thing is sitting right in front of you, waving a Canadian flag in your face.

So, to conclude, Canadians don't like Nickelback any more than Americans do. Yes, it's easy for Americans to look up north and think that all Canadians have gone crazy when they see Chad Kroeger's face plastered on every billboard in the country. But Canadians are not crazy. They're forced to listen to Nickelback even more than Americans are. They're victims. Victims of a system that makes it illegal to play Nickelback less than 20 times a day.

When trying to spot Canadians, mention that a famous Canadian band is only played as "Can-con." They will instantly understand what you mean and break into the opening verse of "How You Remind Me." You will then know you have found a Canadian. That Canadian is possibly Chad Kroeger.

If that's the case, look around and see if you can find Gordon Downie of the Tragically Hip nearby. He will be the guy wrapped in the flag, clutching his Juno Awards.


  1. Venom said...

    Hey man, I love Nickleback...

  2. koolgal_14_1993 said...

    hey love nickelback and my mom too she wants autographes

  3. Ryan said...


  4. Canucklehead said...

    Now, now - we've apologized multiple times for Nickleback. It would really help all parties involved if you would cease bringing up this dark spot on our nation's history. CHEERS!

  5. Anonymous said...

    At least it's Nickelback rather than Justin Bieber, right?

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