Re: [Ietf-languages] [EXTERNAL] Re: language identifiers for sign languages (incl. sgn) vs. attribute for indicating the representation of an individual language in "sign language modality"

John Cowan <cowan@ccil.org> Sat, 23 November 2019 02:10 UTC

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From: John Cowan <cowan@ccil.org>
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2019 21:04:05 -0500
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To: Peter Constable <petercon=40microsoft.com@dmarc.ietf.org>
Cc: Doug Ewell <doug@ewellic.org>, Christian Galinski <christian.galinski@chello.at>, "Fourney, David" <david.fourney@usask.ca>, ietf-languages <ietf-languages@iana.org>, Sebastian Drude <Sebastian.Drude@outlook.com>, "Melinda_Lyons@sil.org" <Melinda_Lyons@sil.org>
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Subject: Re: [Ietf-languages] [EXTERNAL] Re: language identifiers for sign languages (incl. sgn) vs. attribute for indicating the representation of an individual language in "sign language modality"
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I agree that the 't' subtag is not suitable, but I don't think a generic
'-signed-' subtag is a good idea either.  I think we have to use registered
variant tags, and I propose the following convention for them:

        lexifier language tag (3 letters) + disamiguator (2-5 letters or
digits).

Note that this is a single tag, and you can't tell by looking at it if it
is for a signed modality or not.

Examples (shown with country subtags for clarity, but they could be
omitted):

en-US-asefsp:  fingerspelled English using ASL letters
en-GB-bsifsp:  fingerspelled English using British Sign Language letters
en-US-asese: Bornstein's signed English (ASL content words, 14 grammatical
particles)
en-US-asesee1: Seeing Essential English: ASL, modified ASL, and novel signs
pl-PL-psosee1: Seeing Essential Polish (like asesee1, but lexified by
Polish Sign)
en-US-asesee2: Signing Exact English: variant of asesse1 that uses
additional ASL signs for some English compound words; also used in SG
en-GB-bsise: British Signed English, conceptually similar to asesee1 but
not derived from it
en-GB-bsisse: Sign-Supported English, uses mouthing to distinguish between
English words represented by the same sign in British Sign
en-GB-pagetgor: Paget-Gorman Sign, all lexemes are artificial
en-asf: mostly Auslan signs with some from ASL, English syntax, used in AU
and NZ
en-IE-isgise: Irish Signed English (used in the republic)
en-UK-bsinisl: based on Northern Ireland dialect of British Sign (which
shares some syntax with Irish Sign)
fr-FR-fslfs: Français Signé lexified by French Sign
fr-BE-sfbfs: Français Signé lexified by French Belgian Sign
fr-CA-fcsfs: Français Signé lexified by Québec Sign
de-gsglbg: Deutsche Gebärdensprache, used in DE and BE
it-IT-iseis: italiano segnato
it-IT-iseise: italiano segnato essato

And so on.


John Cowan          http://vrici.lojban.org/~cowan        cowan@ccil.org
Dievas dave dantis; Dievas duos duonos        --Lithuanian proverb
Deus dedit dentes; deus dabit panem           --Latin version thereof
Deity donated dentition;
  deity'll donate doughnuts                   --English version by Muke
Tever
God gave gums; God'll give granary            --Version by Mat McVeagh




On Fri, Nov 22, 2019 at 7:24 PM Peter Constable <petercon=
40microsoft.com@dmarc.ietf.org>; wrote:

> The scope of the ‘t’ extension is linguistic content that has undergone
> some type of transform in its expression, and signed modality for a spoken
> language could be considered a transform. But the ‘t’ extension as
> currently defined doesn’t support this. What is supported is primarily
> dealing with text transformations. Also, the way the ‘t’ extension works is
> that the additional information declares what content was transformed _
> *from*_, not what it is transformed _*into*_. For signed modality of
> spoken languages, what’s needed is a way to indicate signed modality as the
> final expression, not the source.
>
>
>
> So, I don’t think the ‘t’ extension is appropriate.
>
>
>
> I think a variant subtag “signed” or “signmod” would be better. The main
> problem that would arise is that this is very generic (it could be usefully
> applied to any oral language), which there has been resistance to in the
> past. A smaller issue is that, while variant tags for specific
> signed-modality variants could be registered, it might make sense to use a
> subtag sequence along the lines -signed-modvarnt, but it’s currently not
> possible to specify a prefix as anything other than a valid language tag.
> (E.g., *-signed can’t be a prefix specification.) That wouldn’t be a
> problem as long as the signed-modality variant is specific to a particular
> language, as would be the case for (e.g.) Signed Exact English.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Peter
>
>
>
> *From:* Ietf-languages <ietf-languages-bounces@ietf.org>; *On Behalf Of *Doug
> Ewell
> *Sent:* Friday, November 22, 2019 1:05 PM
> *To:* Christian Galinski <christian.galinski@chello.at>;; 'Fourney, David'
> <david.fourney@usask.ca>;
> *Cc:* ietf-languages <ietf-languages@iana.org>;; 'Sebastian Drude' <
> Sebastian.Drude@outlook.com>;; Melinda_Lyons@sil.org
> *Subject:* [EXTERNAL] Re: [Ietf-languages] language identifiers for sign
> languages (incl. sgn) vs. attribute for indicating the representation of an
> individual language in "sign language modality"
>
>
>
> Hi Christian,
>
>
>
> > Many true sign languages (se definitions below), such as “ase”
> > (American Sign Language [ASL], which /fictively/ might even have a
> > Newfoundland and Labrador variety – to be coded ase-CA-NL in line
> > with BCP47 rules) have already a language identifier.
>
>
>
> This example is actually not valid BCP 47 syntax. The use of ISO 3166-1
> country codes as region subtags doesn't extend to appending ISO 3166-2
> subdivision codes directly. You would need to use "ase-u-sd-canl" or
> "ase-CA-u-sd-canl". See UTS #35, Section 3.6.5.
>
>
>
> > The question to Doug is, how the BCP and Unicode rules deal with the
> > above-mentioned difference between (true) “individual sign languages”
> > and the “signed language modality” (as a sort of “transform” of any
> > individual language)?
>
>
>
> I don't believe there are or should be any "Unicode rules" (which I assume
> refers to CLDR and the 't' or 'u' extension) that deal with this.
>
>
>
> One approach would be to request a variant subtag, such as 'signed', to
> represent the signed modality of a spoken language, such as (but not
> limited to) Signing Exact English. See RFC 5646, Section 2.2.5 for details
> on variant subtags and Section 3.6 for details on requesting a registration.
>
>
>
> However, some may argue that modality is beyond the scope of BCP 47
> variants and would suggest a CLDR extension to deal with this within the
> 't' extension framework. In that case, your best bet would be to contact
> cldr-contact@unicode.org .
>
>
>
> --
> Doug Ewell | Thornton, CO, US | ewellic.org
> <https://nam06.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fewellic.org&data=02%7C01%7Cpetercon%40microsoft.com%7C19558599ac7d421157fc08d76f8fc274%7C72f988bf86f141af91ab2d7cd011db47%7C1%7C0%7C637100535555481188&sdata=5sWZ089qfuVRPWbmetKrFDHskz%2BETA2vY0ioACdSzos%3D&reserved=0>
>
>
>
>
>
> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: language identifiers for sign languages (incl. sgn) vs.
> attribute for indicating the representation of an individual language in
> "sign language modality"
> From: "Christian Galinski" <christian.galinski@chello.at>;
> Date: Fri, November 22, 2019 11:48 am
> To: "'Fourney, David'" <david.fourney@usask.ca>;
> Cc: <Melinda_Lyons@sil.org>;, "'Sebastian Drude'"
> <Sebastian.Drude@outlook.com>;, <doug@ewellic.org>;
>
>
> Dear David,
>
>
>
> First I have to apologize for my long silence – I was absorbed with work
> on several standards.
>
>
>
> We are now at a crucial moment where things need to be clarified in ISO
> 639-4 “language coding” (and ISO/TR 21636 “Language varieties”) – including
> your issue of how to identify “individual sign languages” (i.e. true
> individual sign languages, which are not just a modality of spoken
> language) and the “signed language modality” which is a signed
> representation of a spoken language).
>
>
>
>    1. concerning the difference between “individual sign languages” and
>    “signed language modality”, the use of the language identifier “sgn” (in
>    library use) is confined to an unidentifiable *individual sign
>    language* – it is NOT referring to a “signed language modality”.
>    According to the fundamental rules of language coding, we cannot change the
>    scope of “sgn”, nor ignore the difference between sign language and the
>    signed language modality.
>    Therefore, for the *sign language modality* we need an “attribute” to
>    be added to the language identifier of an individual language, e.g. if the
>    sign language modality of the type of “Signing Exact English” is used.
>    2. However, I could not find an identifier for *signed language
>    modality*, nor a mechanism for inserting an identifier for this in:
>
> *https://tools.ietf.org/html/bcp47*
> <https://nam06.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Ftools.ietf.org%2Fhtml%2Fbcp47&data=02%7C01%7Cpetercon%40microsoft.com%7C19558599ac7d421157fc08d76f8fc274%7C72f988bf86f141af91ab2d7cd011db47%7C1%7C0%7C637100535555486190&sdata=PWlDE0pdRCgLBG4wsnprwit5%2B6EeB%2Fux%2FiApkJkmweg%3D&reserved=0>
>
> *https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc6497#ref-UTS35*
> <https://nam06.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Ftools.ietf.org%2Fhtml%2Frfc6497%23ref-UTS35&data=02%7C01%7Cpetercon%40microsoft.com%7C19558599ac7d421157fc08d76f8fc274%7C72f988bf86f141af91ab2d7cd011db47%7C1%7C0%7C637100535555491183&sdata=Y3Zi1erRIWT%2F8K%2F5ZhtfSPCofmTkczyny89RagNWmhA%3D&reserved=0>
>
> *http://unicode.org/reports/tr35/*
> <https://nam06.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Funicode.org%2Freports%2Ftr35%2F&data=02%7C01%7Cpetercon%40microsoft.com%7C19558599ac7d421157fc08d76f8fc274%7C72f988bf86f141af91ab2d7cd011db47%7C1%7C0%7C637100535555496180&sdata=fezBI46al7DmxtciBBIwI7Fj%2Fuuyor7d8uB7xdyvzM4%3D&reserved=0>
>
> The regular order of attributes to a language tag (language identifier) is
> “lang-geogr” (dialect), or “lang-script” (language written in a certain
> script) or “lang-script-geogr” (language in a script in a certain region)..
> In between, a “t” (for “transform” in the meaning of transcription,
> transliteration, translation or other) may be inserted.
>
>
>
> From your experience/problems with video technology (and HTML), the
> questions to you would be:
>
>    1. Many true sign languages (se definitions below), such as “ase”
>    (American Sign Language [ASL], which /fictively/ might even have a
>    Newfoundland and Labrador variety – to be coded ase-CA-NL in line with
>    BCP47 rules) have already a language identifier.
>    *Does it need another attribute to further specify them as a sign
>    language? *In that case, an attribute must be found which is different
>    from “sgn”. How could it look like?
>    2. In the case of a *signed language modality*, such as “Signing Exact
>    English” the core language identifier for English would be “eng”. It would
>    need an attribute to identify it as the signed language modality (which
>    could be followed by a country code, if there are “dialects” of /fictive/
>    eng-xxx-AUS meaning “Signing Exact English as used in Australia”. What
>    could “xxx” indicating “signed language modality look like?
>    3. It probably would not help to use an attribute identifier “Xxxx” in
>    the slot of “script code”, as a signed language modality might slightly
>    differ depending on the script used, even if it is the same spoken language
>    (represented in different scripts in different areas/communities).
>    4. Could the “t” (transform) symbol be of help – as a given signed
>    language modality somehow is a “transformation” of a spoken language?
>
>
>
>    1. The above questions (resp. the answer to them) could have an impact
>    on ISO 639 and ISO/TR 21636 insofar as we should not formulate provisions
>    in these documents which conflict with other standards. We should rather
>    try to find generic solutions.
>
>
>
> The question to Doug is, how the BCP and Unicode rules deal with the
> above-mentioned difference between (true) “individual sign languages” and
> the “signed language modality” (as a sort of “transform” of any individual
> language)? see the respective terminology entries below
>
>
>
> Best regards
>
> Christian
>
>
>
>
>
> p.s.
>
> In the most recent revised version of ISO 639-4 we came up with the
> following terminology entries:
>
> individual sign language
>
> NOT: signed language
>
> *individual language* (3.1.3) having the visual-spatial *language
> modality* (3.5.1) as basic modality
>
> Note 1 to entry: Usually “sign language” appears as part of the name of
> the respective individual language.
>
> EXAMPLE: ASL (American Sign Language); )
>
>
>
> signed language modality
>
> NOT: sign language
>
> visual-spatial *language modality* (3.5.1) that uses a combination of
> hand shapes, palm orientation and movement of the hand, arm or body, and
> facial expression
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
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