THIS POST HAS BEEN UPDATED. See below.
Sébastien Caron is a brave fellow. He is the Liberal candidate for Laurier-Sainte-Marie, where he has to contend with two (two!) communist parties vying for precious Liberal votes. Oh, and Caron also happens to be running against Gilles Duceppe, the preternaturally popular leader of the Bloc Québécois, who in the last election garnered over half the votes and beat his nearest competitor––a Liberal, coincidentally or not–by nearly 19,000 votes. [UPDATE: Wrong! It was actually the NDP that took second place, by about 16,000. So much for my narrative.]
It seems Mr. Caron’s plight attracted the attention of an internet vigilante, who has used his powers, such as they are, to ‘help’ Mr. Caron–whether Mr. Caron wants it or not. Threats and means words from Bloc HQ ensued.
Caron’s ‘blockthebloc.ca‘ is a cutesy teaser site in which he asks visitors for a donation to his campaign. ‘presentpourlequebec.com‘ is the product of a cybersquatter named Éric Baillargeon, who bought the domain because it’s darn close to the Bloc’s own ‘presentpourlequebec.org‘. Apparently, Baillargeon linked his site to Caron’s, meaning those hapless visitors wishing to visit the Bloc québécois site and gaze upon Mr. Duceppe’s hypnotizing blue eyes, but type the wrong internet suffix, are instead directed to Caron’s ‘Block the Bloc’ site. Cheeky!
(UPDATE: In fact, it wasn’t Mr. Baillargeon who linked the two; he merely pointed it out here. My apologies.)
Also, Caron himself isn’t sure what to think. I’ll let him explain.
“Our website has been available for the public to visit since around the middle of last week,” Caron told me via email. “It was in the following days that we discovered that someone was pointing their domain name to our site. We later learned his name from reports in the media.”
So, uhh, how did the Bloc react?
“They tried to come after us and threaten us. They called the site ‘illegal’ and said that we would be hearing from them.”
Oh, yeah. Another thing: Mr. Caron is a lawyer at Heenan Blaikie. He specializes in civil and commercial litigation, and isn’t to be trifled with. So…
“We haven’t let their tactics deter us from continuing to promote our campaign against Gilles Duceppe. We also haven’t heard from them since their initial reaction.”
So there. Block on.