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Norwegian fury over Stockholm 'propaganda'

The Local/og · 15 Mar 2012, 13:11

Published: 15 Mar 2012 13:11 GMT+01:00

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The dust up over which city reigns supreme in Scandinavia took place at a real estate and investment show in Cannes, France, where some 200 Swedish representatives placed banners and advertising with the slogan "Stockholm: The Capital of Scandinavia".

The move sparked a fierce backlash from Norwegian and Danish delegations miffed by the Swedish capital's unsubstantiated claim to be the top city in Scandinavia.

”This is typical Swedish megalomania,” said Erling Fossen to Norwegian Afenposten newspaper.

The Swedes even used the slogan at the bottom of the event’s entry card, prompting irritated reactions from other fair-goers who weren’t in favour of the claim.

“Many Norwegians reacted by spontaneously tearing off the Stockholm advert [from the entry card],” Fossen said.

Monica Ewert of the Stockholm Business Region, the group behind the Swedish campaign, claimed that the slogan was a result of two years of campaign planning, and she sticks by the phrasing.

“Stockholm is the biggest city in Scandinavia and is centrally located. We have the biggest work force, and a truly influential culture – that’s the motive,” she told the Svenska Dagbladet (SvD) newspaper.

But Ewert isn’t concerned by the thought that such a brash statement could lead to negative publicity, as it has only led to positive statistics since its inception in 2005.

Story continues below…

“We’re seeing our place in the rankings going upwards. This is something we’re both humbled and really glad about. By referring to Stockholm in this way, we’re trying to be remembered, and this is something we’re really succeeding with,” she told SvD.

The Local/og (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:57 March 15, 2012 by Vill
Surely the Norwegians don't believe the boring city of Oslo deserves the arbitrary title of "Capital of Scandinavia".....
13:58 March 15, 2012 by Boar
Absolutely true. Because, Most Natives and foreigners are happy in Stockholm than in Oslo or Copenhagen.

To find a job in Stockholm is easier too. Stockholm will be next London. London is no longer an attractive for EU nationals. No more jobs in London. The pay has reduced and more black jobs are in London. Now, they flock to Sweden and learn Swedish rather than learning English
14:00 March 15, 2012 by Rossminster
Quite apart from the slogan's being extraordinarily presumptuous and rude, what struck me was the "some 200" delegates from Sweden swanning around Cannes. That's a helluva trade delegation, from one company apparently, Stockholm Business Region, a company wholly owned by the City of Stockholm, however that works.

Entertaining, though.
14:39 March 15, 2012 by philster61
Oslo is way over rated, Over priced and unfriendly.... I think it'd be between Stockholm or Copenhagen...Oslo? No way
15:35 March 15, 2012 by ?????

Stockholm being the next London? People learn Swedish rather than English?

Hope that this is a kind of joke that I didn't get rather than there are actually people who believe that!

As for the article, yes Stockholm is the biggest city in Scandinavia and probably deserves some kind of recognition as its center but calling it a capital is rude for its neighbours. How about St. Petersburg being called the capital of Baltic? Swedes wouldn't like that much, would they?
15:38 March 15, 2012 by Boar
True. Many Norwegians are more reserved. When you talk about Scandinavia or Nordics, then, you will definitely say Sweden. You can never miss Sweden. Copenhagen is good too. But, not as welcoming as Sweden.

I never see any interesting news from Norway. Except the elks living there.
16:04 March 15, 2012 by Abe L
You'd imagine that people in such positions where more mature and had other things to worry about then what country claims to have Scandinavia's capital.
16:19 March 15, 2012 by gpafledthis
To quote the LA Riots "can't we all get along" !! I propose a solution ! SEATTLE and with the Space Needle we provide a nice place to jump from!the booze is better the fish are finer and the butter makes the batter better with Linn Larsson cooking it would be the best - won't go about the prices for you Crone Ridden folks !
16:43 March 15, 2012 by libertarianism
I appreciate the megalomania reference. The Fram vs The Vasa.
16:46 March 15, 2012 by gpafledthis
I thought OSLO was the capitol of some North African country ??
17:09 March 15, 2012 by tgolan
Norway is not even in Scandinavia It's a part of the Pakistan tribal areas
17:27 March 15, 2012 by sunnchilde
Come on people. Let them have it. So what? No one is going to not go to Oslo because of this. No one is going to not go to Copenhagen because of this. It's a silly title meant as a marketing gimmick. Nothing more.
17:43 March 15, 2012 by EP
Stockholm ... the next London ... HAHAHAH! Thanks for that joke, made my day. Stockholm ... it's in the middle of nowhere ...
17:48 March 15, 2012 by RobinHood
There is no capital of Scandinavia; never was, never will be. Each city is unique with its own good things and bad things. Stockholm Business Region is supposed to make people think positively about Stockholm, not rip the city's name off tickets, annoy the neighbours and irritate the neutrals. What good does that bring to Stockholm? Taxi for Ms Ewert.
18:14 March 15, 2012 by Greysuede
If Norway is pakistan then Sweden is syria plus iraq and iran etc.
19:57 March 15, 2012 by philster61

Which would make Norway the most dangerous....
21:14 March 15, 2012 by HYBRED
I thought Malmo was the "Capital of Scandinavia"
21:27 March 15, 2012 by foxpur
This is a VERY weird comment chain, even for The Local... :)
00:24 March 16, 2012 by acidcritic
Oslo is the boring capital of a boring country full of boring people. Conversely, Stockholm is just the contrary.
01:53 March 16, 2012 by Boar
I was never in Oslo. And, not sure if I would visit Oslo. Maybe once in my lifetime maybe. To check if the Pizza really costs 200 Nok. Was in several countries. But, never in Oslo even living in Stockholm since several years.
06:39 March 16, 2012 by Marc the Texan
Comment: Reminds me of the Seinfeld episode with the T-shirts, 'world's greatest dad' vs. ' number 1 dad'. Well I don't know how official any of these rankings really are.

youtube com/watch?v=zdv9yFIoLPk
07:04 March 16, 2012 by Greysuede

...it will just make both capitals look like Greater Londum...
07:47 March 16, 2012 by OUIJA
The campaign is one of the many proofs of what I have always

described as "Swedish Arrogance". And Monika Ewert is one of its major representatives. Believe me. I know perfectly well who she is and how she thinks. The prior Stockholm Visitors Board, will never recognize that, even though the P. R. campaign is well thought and is producing results (would like to see figures on this), it is underrating the capital of the neighbouring countries. I do not think Sweden could be happy if Norway comes out with a

"Norway. The most intelligent country of Scandinavia" Or am I wrong?

Nevertheless, it is astonishing that Norwegians and Danes reacted after so many years. They are really slow. Something is not working inside their skulls.
10:23 March 16, 2012 by Boar
They just have oil. How can the brain work without it for them. Otherwise, it becomes a poor country without oil.
12:01 March 16, 2012 by Shawntooth
LOL, a typical norge will say "norway is the best country in the world".......sitting on the black gold believing that they are intellectually and morally superior while judging others' unfortunate.....shall i begin talking about nobel peace award?
15:21 March 16, 2012 by Lotus2035
A little bit of personal pride in the area you are from is fine but extreme nationalistic pride is an illness. Plenty of it here in Sweden. Sverige this, Sverige that, Any vid I see on youtube about Sweden that is aimed at an international audience invariably has some idiot in the first few comments saying 'PROUD TO BE SWEDISH'.

I'm not just ragging on about Swedes here. Most countries do it but some are worse than others. Group A tries to show how much better it is than Group B. YAWN.
16:40 March 16, 2012 by TheWatchman
Stockholm and Oslo aren't Scandinavian, not sure why people still think it is. I'd argue that Copenhagen is the most Scandinavian out of those three, but I'd say Trondheim should be the capital of Scandinavia, it is still in the control of Scandinavians.
23:19 March 16, 2012 by entry
Back in 2004 I was mortified that my wife and her daughter laughed at me because the Swedish language computer program I had loaded unbeknownst to myself utilized a voice with a Stockholm accent. Stockholm is the Capital - period. Outside of Stockholm only those who are required to do so begrudgingly pay the surcharges to travel to the inner circles. The rest of us I believe would gladly go around Stockholm and avoid it altogether.
13:12 March 17, 2012 by cogito
Do the tourist authorities still hype Stockholm as "the Venice of the North?"

Anyone ever heard Venice refer to itself as "the Stockholm of the south?"
14:12 March 17, 2012 by OUIJA
@cogito number 29

No, cogito, but I have heard that Swedes are the most intelligent people of the whole world.
17:11 March 17, 2012 by cogito

I have heard that, too. Many times. From Swedes.

They also told me that they are politest people in the whole world.
21:15 March 17, 2012 by hammad674
Lolllllll Swedes n Intelligence are two opposite Poles.
11:07 March 18, 2012 by voyagör
Viewed from France ( being a frenchman living back in France ) Stockholm is obviously the "capital" of scandinavia, if a survey was made associating the word scandinavia with another one : sweden would come first followed by Stockholm. The French love everything Swedish and it is a very powerful marketing method to add "sweden" or "stockholm" to make it sound " nature friendly" , "technologically advanced", " top design", "build to last", etc

No wonder they used it in a Trade show in southern France, it's just obvious !

Oslo seems so small and unfriendly, Copenhagen looking at itself and not opened to the world and Helsinki way too far north...
11:08 March 18, 2012 by IranianAtheist
They send 200 people to France and finance it by money from residents of Stockholm (...a company owned by the city of Stockholm) to achieve exactly what?

If the plane ticket and hotel for each did cost 10000SEK , they would have spent 2.0million SEK on this show.
14:32 March 18, 2012 by Spuds MacKenzie
So funny that this slogan has been around for 7 years now, yet the Danes & Norwegians only just now learned of it! Talk about not being very bright!
14:49 March 18, 2012 by OUIJA
Stop arguing. Stockholm is the capital of Scandinavia. The Swedish government, Social Democrats, Juholt and Gudrun Shyman plus the feminists from Malmö, say so. No more debate. Al Gore.
08:12 March 19, 2012 by Soft Boiled
Herrings at dawn!
12:38 March 19, 2012 by OUIJA
Stockholm is the capital of Scandinavia.

If you do not agree, you will be considered by the dictatorship we have as a government, not politically correct, and they sill send after you the SÄPO, the marine, the army, the police, the feminists, Pippa, no-Pippa, the poodle, Bofors, the king, SVT, Aftonbladet, Expressen, The Local and your neighbours, plus doctors and nurses from Karolinska, which are the most extreme force to erradicate non-believers in the Swedish system.
13:55 March 19, 2012 by strixy
This ia so low that I have no words. How can you make a scene like that, tearing entrance cards and then brag about it in the media? Those people need some education in savoir vivre because they have confused the French trade fair venue with their barn!

I live in Oslo. Oslo is ugly. It is nowhere near London, Paris, Prague, Brussels, Vienna etc. It is like Sheffield and only on a sunny day!

Norwegians accusing Swedes of megalomania while behaving like a bunch of primadonnas proves that their reputation as stuck up overreactive princesses is well earned.
10:27 March 20, 2012 by motti
Stockholm is pretty, Oslo has nothing except a big park with statues. Give me Copenhagen any time. The people there are the best
21:39 March 21, 2012 by Room for Rent
Most boring and the rassist capital in the world is Oslo, peace prize is perfect for you Oslo
13:47 March 23, 2012 by Orbit
did everyone forget Helsinki? Helsinki is pretty great, way more fun than Oslo and more down to earth than Stockholm. Copenhagen is pretty awesome. Tru dat
09:48 July 31, 2013 by bobinthebul
Helsinki, now there's a great town full of friendly people. I knew a Finnish guy who loved his wife so much, he almost told her! ;-)
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