Request for help in videotaping sign languages

SignWriting signwriting at MAC.COM
Mon Jan 25 17:09:10 UTC 2010

SignWriting List
January 25, 2010

Hello Rachel!
THANK YOU for this posting, and everyone is quite excited about your  
project, using SignWriting in the SignTyp crosslinguistic database.

And while I think of it, I believe you and Charles Butler are  
presenting a paper about the SignTyp database, and about SignWriting,  
at the TISLR conference at Purdue University in Indiana, in September,  

I just found a message posted by Charles to the List on September 22,  
2009, asking for help with the videos I can see now that this  
request has been out there for some time...Thank you Charles, for this  
message in September...(please see old message pasted below Rachel's  
message below)...Have you received any responses yet? I believe Rachel  
told me that there have not been many responses...

So everyone, here is the reason why we need your help...the SignTyp  
project, at the University of Connecticut, is an important one for  
many reasons. From the SignWriting perspective, it will be one of the  
first times that SignWriting is used for a linguistic database for  
sign language linguistic research in the US, and I believe it will  
introduce many linguists to SignWriting for the first time..

And I am really impressed with SignTyp. One of the cool features is  
that it will be providing multi-lingual information...different sign  
languages will be in the database...

That is why we need YOUR help...Your group will be paid to provide  
videos of specific signs in your sign language, and the SignWriting of  
those signs, for the database...

Please write to the List if you can help us...I am hoping that videos  
of German Sign Language, Flemish Sign Language, French-Swiss Sign  
Language and others can be a part of the project...

We look forward to hearing from you!

Val ;-)


On Jan 24, 2010, at 2:38 PM, Rachel Channon wrote:

> Dr. Harry van der Hulst from the University of Connecticut and I are  
> writing a grant application for a project that will expand the  
> current SignTyp crosslinguistic database ( 
> ) and add SignWriting.  The goal is to create videotapes of signs of  
> different languages and SignWriting transcriptions of these  
> videotapes. The results of this work will be web-based dictionaries  
> for each sign language as well as a research database.  Each  
> dictionary will include pictorial descriptions of the concept,  
> SignWriting transcriptions and glosses in both English and the  
> language spoken in the same area as the sign language, and records  
> for SignTyp, the research database.  The project should therefore  
> provide material which will be useful to deaf people, to students of  
> the language, and to researchers.
> We are looking for people who could find and videotape native  
> signers of various languages. We would provide a word list (mostly  
> as pictures), and we would be able to pay something to you and to  
> the person being videotaped.  If you are interested or would like  
> more information, please email me at rchannon at
> Rachel Channon
> University of Connecticut
> Department of Linguistics, Unit 1145
> 337 Mansfield Road
> Storrs, CT 06269-1145


Message back in September:

> From: Charles Butler <chazzer3332000 at>
> Date: September 22, 2009 9:13:22 AM PDT
> To: sw-l at
> Subject: [sw-l] Call for help on Paper
> Reply-To: SignWriting List <sw-l at>
> Rachel Cannon of the University of Connecticut, and Charles Butler  
> of the Center for Sutton Movement Writing are looking for help in a  
> demonstration project comparing several signed languages for a  
> linguistic modeling study.
> The project will call for as many as 10 distinct signed languages  
> and video dictionary citations with between 200 and 300 signs per  
> language.
> While Ms. Cannon has credentials in the linguistic field working  
> with SignType, this will be a model project to interface SignType  
> with SignWriting in creating transcriptions of video dictionary  
> citations.
> We are looking for people who for a small remuneration will help in  
> citations of video dictionaries.  I know that we have people on this  
> list with contacts in
> USA,
> Brazil
> Norway
> Sweden
> Germany
> Ethiopia
> Spain
> Colombia
> Portugal
> Saudi Arabia
> This is the first demonstration project I have seen that is being  
> proposed to use multiple languages for the database project coming  
> from a linguistic study field.  What we are in need of now is  
> contact names and emails to cite for a proposal.
> I am working independently for a pilot proposal for TISLR using this  
> method to compare ASL and LIBRAS with a smaller subset of vocabulary.
> If you are willing to help, or know a source video-based citation  
> dictionary, please contact
> Charles Butler
> chazzer3332000 at
> in the USA as soon as possible.


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