Monday, February 12, 2007

VLogging: Code Switching?

Jay Krieger explains that it appears when he signs for a VLog, he code-switched to English. However, for this VLog, he intentionally tries to stay in ASL mode.


Michele said...

Interesting! I've noticed that other bloggers like Joey Baer and few others tend to sign more English than ASL, it left me puzzled and wondering why. Maybe it is a psychological thing that when we are faced with a camera or on stage or whatever, we tend to sign in a much formal way.

drmzz said...

The intimidation factor, hmm. 80% of communication involves non-verbal cues. ASL requires reciprocation between two persons, so talking to yourself to a web cam is a conscious experience that lacks the available and reinforcing cues. There is no interaction going on. I imagine some restrictions of coding onto expression come into play.

grantlairdjr said...

I know what you mean. I've noticed it myself, too.

I guess maybe we can do little trick by invite one of your friend to sit with you and talk to him in ASL while webcam is running.

It could be different....

Jon said...

Let's change window from Microsoft to Micro"Sign" (chuckle)

Joey Baer said...

Very good!!! Yes, some people approached me and say why did I change my signing mode in front of camera. Now, you have prompted me to respond in vlog sometimes soon.

Grant made a good suggestion and that's something we can try - play with our ASL in front of camcorder and see how we adjust to it. Just like English, ASL have its own register! In my opinion, it doesn't matter how people sign, they sign in ASL because it is the only sign language in our country.

That's wonderful way to discuss our own language!

SDA said...

Let me tell you - this is probably your best-ever ASL delivery! Actually, most of your other vlogs were just fine also.
I believe that it's kind of subconscious thing for us to code-switch, given our educational history. I'm pretty sure that many of us grew up educated via the 'total communication' approach which the educational settings abused and pushed us into the sim-com method.
We were, unfortunately, never encouraged to think and express ourselves in ASL, in any registers - from informal to formal. Many of us did not have the opportunity to develop skills in articulating scholarly information in ASL.
And keep in mind, many of us are still carrying around with us the diglossic attitude we have regarding ASL and English.
As for Joey's ending comment where he said: 'it doesn't matter how people sign, they sign in ASL because it is the only sign language in our country' - I beg to disagree. Yes, we have many deaf people here in USA that probably sign with fluidity and all that. It does not mean they are signing in ASL, I'm sorry to say, my dear Joey. Check their syntax and semantics. They scream "English"! This is known as 'English-like' signing.
Last, but not the least, Jay - keep up with your effort in delivering your messages in ASL, in its 'purest form'! ;-)

Joey Baer said...


If an individual sign in "English like", their ASL level then should be 0 or 1. That's where I am coming from. We need to keep ASL in one place just like English. If a person write poor English, their rubric would be 0 or 1. Why can't we have the same for ASL? Since there are one sign language (ASL) in this country, we should push for one rubric matrix for all signers. In this way, we will become more consistent and clear with how we can master true ASL!

I will vlog more on this!!

Lantana said...

Okay, when we sit down, preparing for a video in ASL, we have to think like this, "My computer is deaf"!

Is that what we are trying to say?

Penny said...

I don't concur that Joey signed "English" on video. Joey's signing style in person and on video are the same to me. No difference. He does have graceful signing style and used some vocabulary and spelled them out but it does not mean he communicated in English. Carl shared about qualities in ASL and I think this is a good example. Some think Joey used English but actually he communicated in top quality in ASL. Lately, Joey's vlog has been discussed on Politics therefore it makes sense that he communicated in top quality of ASL. If he presents vlog to tell a funny story or or other subjects then he might be losen up a little bit. I think it depends on what subject to discuss on vlog.

Phil Easterling said...

Agree! When many of you start "ASL VLogs", I myself notice most of you using PSE instead of ASL. I was wondering why you all saying "ASL Vlogs" when you use PSE? I would suggest you use your natural ASL instead of using PSE (English mixed with ASL) that not you. Encourage you be yourself and use ASL. ASL is most beautiful language.

Barinthus said...

Interesting point about your computer being associated with English language due to the "default" language being shown on its monitor so when you sign, you cannot help but to code-switch.

Baer - your comment about ASL being 0 or 1 made me wonder have you seen Herzig's ASL Scale? She developed a way for us to measure a deaf student's language development in ASL - hearies already have theirs for English.

Anonymous said...

Well said, Jay. Just be yourself, the way you are signing. I know Video Relay Service (VRS) and "one-eye" cam can be different. I can see that you sign in a different position. That is because the VRS and cam are in the smaller size, just like a box.

RLM said...

Definitely YES! That's why I oppose such translation or captions within vlog postings upon insistence. Vloggers need to be themselves than worrying how others perceive their natural language usage.

Vloggers would end up compromising themselves if they are succumbed to provide transcripts or captions. Vloggers would be more likely to water down their own ASL signings. Don't do that!

Vloggers need to learn that they do not have to oblige for the sake of "English' written language.

Many languages are not exactly translated anyway.

That's why I vigorously oppose Jamie Berke and her public request for captioning the vlog postings.

Too much for vloggers themselves anyway with "undue burden".

ASL First,
Robert L. Mason (RLM)

Joey Baer said...

Barinthus - I havent seen Herzig's ASL Scale. Care to share it with us? What a great discussion here!