It was during our visit to Paris in late June that we became aware of roving groups of women in their 20s or 30s who are carrying clipboards and who walk up to tourists and say "Do you speak English". We were warned about this early after our arrival so we never responded to them. I believe they always addressed the question to my wife so they seem to be pursuing women more than men.
We are really not sure what they were up to but we spoke with some other travelers about who said that they stole his sandwich. They apparently claim to be conducting a survey or asking for a petition to be signed.
We encountered them at the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral and at the Gar du Nord train station. We arrived relatively early in the morning at the Eiffel Tower one day and actually saw them traveling together in a line carrying the clipboards.
Also suspect, are these young men carrying large hoops upon which are strung these cheap metal replicas of the Eiffel Tower. We saw them both at the tower and at Versailles. There was one time when they must've seen some police as they all ran like lemmings across the area under the Eiffel Tower towards its periphery.