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Title: Verba volant.... media durant: Collecting Formosan Indigenous TV news for documenting and reviving the languages 
Author: Szakos, Jozsef
Date: 2009-03-14
Description: Ever since Taiwan Indigenous TV started operations three years ago, daily news in Atayal, Bunun, Paiwan, Tsou, Tau, Kavalan, Amis,Puyuma languages have been regularly broadcast. Policy changes shifted the originally monolingual news blocks to multilingual communication during the past year. The news broadcasts have not been archived by the station, therefore in the summer of 2006 we decided to regularly record and index these items. I wish to introduce what is comprised in about three years' news that we have collected. The 2 TB of recordings are catalogued and they are easy to access ( on 400 DVDs,low video resolution, about 2000 hours). Whenever I went to the mountains, I used selected parts for prompting field-work elicitation in Tsou, Kanakanavu and Saaroa, the latter two not being represented in the broadcasts. Linguistically, when all the indexing and transcription done, we receive a very real picture of the bilingual speakers' competence, heavily influenced by the Chinese environment. Contrasted with the more conservative speech style of field-work recordings, the question arises which one should become the model of revival. Culturally we can see how the language is adapted to modern life, but certain interviews stress the traditions and their transformation. Technically, as I intend to demonstrate, this ongoing collection is a good testing ground for new software solutions dealing with fast transcription, thematic and word by word indexing methods, extraction of audio files, handling of large media files for archiving and documentation. Practically, the amount of data elicited by far exceeds the needs and capabilities of a lone researcher. For the broadcasters the news seem to be ephemeral, but as language materials in good technical quality, they could be a treasure for international linguists and native speakers. I wish to explore ways how the scholarly community could offer ways of preserving, continuing and completing the documentation for the benefit of mankind.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/5048
Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

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