1887
Volume 20, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1384-6647
  • E-ISSN: 1569-982X
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Abstract

Abstract

Video relay interpreting (VRI) enables communication between a signed language user, remotely connected to an interpreter by videophone, and an interlocutor in spoken contact with the interpreter by telephone. Both users of the service are physically separated from each other and from the interpreter, who is in a studio. Essential technical components of the system include such items as videophones, telephones, computers, software, and a headset. This article explores how the interpreter orients towards the headset, turning it into an interactional resource. Examples of how this is done are identified in extracts from a corpus of VRI conversations between users of Swedish Sign Language (SSL) and spoken Swedish. Ethical approval and all participants’ consent were obtained. Three practices were identified: pointing towards the headset, orienting towards it in other ways (positioning, gesturing, direction of gaze), and holding it. All these practices have concrete pragmatic implications for the various steps in communication, such as establishing reference, repairs, and turn allocation. Enhancing VRI interpreters’ awareness of how equipment like a headset helps to organize the interaction is important, with a view to ensuring that the available technology is used to best effect for purposes of communication.

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2018-09-24
2019-12-16
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): headset , interpreting , signed language , telephone and video relay interpreting
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