SW Video Captions Receptive Expressive

Valerie Sutton signwriting at MAC.COM
Sun Apr 15 14:50:08 UTC 2007

SignWriting List
April 15, 2007

On Apr 14, 2007, at 12:32 PM, Stuart Thiessen wrote:
> I agree that both are valuable depending on what the purpose of the  
> captioning is.
> If the purpose is to mimic the video directly (for whatever  
> reason), then receptive makes sense.
> If the purpose is to teach the regular reading of SW, then it seems  
> to me that it is better to stay expressive so that it matches the  
> way we should write. We don't want to confuse things too much.
> To allow flexibility, I would propose that we develop 2 symbols  
> that could be something like a paragraph symbol (ΒΆ) that could  
> precede a change in views. When we see that "paragraph" mark at the  
> beginning of a text, then we know it is in receptive view. No  
> paragraph marks at all would mean it is by default expressive. We  
> could have an optional paragraph mark that indicates expressive  
> when we have a document that has mixed views. That keeps quotation  
> marks as quotation marks, but allows us to indicate views as  
> needed. I seriously doubt that we would tend to switch views in the  
> middle of a paragraph, so it seems to me we could place view  
> switching (when needed) as a beginning paragraph marker.
> What do you all think?
> Thanks,
> Stuart


Thanks, Stuart, for this suggestion and yes, I agree that Expressive  
is the way we read everyday and should be kept the norm...Receptive  
writing on videos is really more for demonstration purposes...to show  
the visual connection between the symbols and the actual signing...

Captioning in written-ASL on spoken language videos I hope will  
become more common over time...for information purposes...and those  
should be Expressive...I believe Adam mentioned that earlier and I  
agree...that was the reason that James Short and I started working  
together originally, was to create written ASL captions and place  
them on spoken-language videos that educate the world about science  
and geography and so forth...

Regarding the markers you and Ingvild have suggested....believe it or  
not...we had those years ago! Your idea of Paragraph markers are fine  
too, Stuart. The markers we had years ago were a little mannequin  
man...like the little mannequin we have to show location in the IMWA,  
but they were slightly smaller and placed very tiny in the upper left  
corner of a document. The black mannequin was the Expressive and the  
White was the receptive...so we could offer those as symbols to use  

The video is so fast, that there is barely time to read the  
SignWriting, let alone see the video too and notice the Receptive  
marker if we put one there...

It is my guess that Receptive captioning for videos will become like  
demonstration, but will be rare...

The problem with creating spoken-language videos with written ASL  
captions is the translation work from English to ASL is the hard  
part, before the captions are written and placed on the video...

Val ;-)

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