[sw-l] Re: Country and Language Codes, and standardization with ISO

Stuart Thiessen sw at PASSITONSERVICES.ORG
Mon Sep 27 19:06:04 UTC 2004

I wonder if we would have the same problem with other countries where
ASL is used? So you are suggesting that if it is an established sign
language of Country 1 that is also used in Country 2, that we should use
the country code for Country 2 in the region slot?

As in your example: sgn-US-CA where CA is Canada.

Related to Canada, would they refer to it as sgn-CA-fr or would they
prefer to use an abbreviation to say it is Quebec Sign Language (LSQ)? I
am curious about that. Does the ISO have a way to identify regions in a
country as part of their process?

So that would mean that sgn-US is really the code for ASL, but sgn-US-CA
would refer to the Canadian usage of ASL?  That certainly would be
helpful for marking variants of a sign language that are different
because it is the same language but used in another country.

I wonder ... is there a way we can identify dialects?  That may be
helpful in dictionary usage to identify where that particular sign is
used.  Maybe we find it is used everywhere so we can just use the
regular ISO code for the sign language.  But maybe we find it is more of
a southwestern sign or a California sign or a Michigan sign or whatever.
Would it work to add another slot for marking dialect?  The same could
be true for other countries.  I don't know if that has to be
ISO-approved, but maybe we could work out something that is an agreed
SignWriting standard for our purposes.

Unless you all know of an existing method of identifying sign language
dialects used in the research community????



Valerie Sutton wrote:

> SignWriting List
> September 27, 2004
> Stephen Slevinski wrote:
>> US-SGN may work for the US, but what about Canada?
> Canada is certainly one of those unique cases. It is an exception
> because of conversations we had with Canadians several years ago about
> this. We have not tried to register official codes for the two
> Canadian signed languages yet, because I would like to speak with
> Canadians from both the English and French speaking regions first, to
> find out how they feel now...So for now...
> If we are following the standard already established, the regional
> country codes would be:
> CA-en (English speaking part of Canada)
> CA-fr (French speaking part of Canada)
> which would become
> sgn-CA-en (ASL used in Canada)
> sgn-CA-fr (French-Canadian Sign Language)
> The reason there is confusion, is that the English-speaking part of
> Canada did not give their ASL a unique name. They still call it ASL,
> even though they live in Canada...they do not call it Canadian Sign
> Language. So when we spoken about this on the SignWriting List, I was
> told that they did not want to differentiate between the countries...
> We could do this:
> sgn-US-CA...
> But this needs to be discussed more...
> Hope this information has been interesting for all of you, and I look
> forward to your feedback -  Val ;-)
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------

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