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Watch: The Champs-Élysées is hosting a giant dictation competition

origin 1Paris’ most iconic street, the Champs-Elysees, has been transformed into an outdoor mass “dictation” marathon on Sunday, June 4, 2023 ©ALAIN JOCARD/AFP or licensees

Paris’ most iconic street, the Champs-Elysees, was transformed into an open-air mass “dictation” spell on Sunday, pitting thousands of France’s smartest bookworms against each other.

More than 50,000 people have applied to participate in the event, a world first, in which aspirants attempt to faithfully and error-free transcribe a text read to them.

Of the entries, 5,100 people, aged between 10 and 90, were drawn at random to take part in one of the three main dictations led by novelist Rachid Santaki.

With 1,779 desks placed on Paris’s most famous avenue in each session, the organizers had sought to break the world record for a spelling dictation contest.