Friday, 16 June 2017

Deaf talking to the Deaf and wondering why hearing don't answer...

There have been many signed/captioned or both signed and captioned videos online, yet hearing are still not getting the message of awareness of deaf people or of hearing loss.

Yesterday I watched a very sassy lady making the point of what 'Hearing need to know about deaf people and how they should communicate..' To be fair she included captioning and sign language, and appeared also to be speaking on the video as well,  so 100% access nearly. I.E. 100% to US and posted the video on a dedicated deaf site. Probably the first real mistake she has made, preaching to the converted.

The thing about the video is hearing people watching it, will read the captions, and/or listen to the voice (If it has a spoken commentary).  I've always wondered on that basis how you can educate a hearing person, whose natural tendency is to listen, and READ, (Not watch the sign).   Captioned sign according to the deaf purist is self-defeating, they say they know hearing WON'T watch the sign language.

The video was/is highly dependent on hearing tuning in to the deaf site, which most wouldn't of course.  Even deaf/HoH social media is pretty much a 'not-interesting' area for hearing people. If the vid was sign-only, the hearing could switch off because they don't understand sign, so would most HI who need captions. 

I am not sure how 'Deaf' awareness works or if it does at all, as Deaf output is Deaf-oriented and posted at Deaf people.  Is the video available to hearing sites and posted there ? (Just asking). You cannot make hearing aware unless they are watching deaf output. Deaf need to engage on hearing sites and make the pitch there. 

As a deaf person with a passing knowledge of sign, without captions I would switch off.   I don't watch or am able to follow 90% of pure ASL or BSL output, it isn't a great loss to me personally, but a HUGE loss to the BSL and ASL user trying to make us aware without an 'in.    The signer is talking to his or herself. We just assume you want to be alone and leave you to it.

I could suggest telling hearing people off via sarcasm, is a no-no, that will mean they switch off too, because deaf lack the real knowledge to use sarcasm, and it looks more like a lecture or point-scoring, to those who blame hearing for everything that bugs them.  All so pointless and unfocused.  Humour is good a great way to do it, but again NO lecture or its a turn off, being topical helps too, that means deaf being really aware of current events and able to engage hearing equally on comment too. Many humorous vids by the Deaf, are excruciatingly naive and amateur and do not reflect the sophistication many deaf do have, they are childlike almost.

Up the level we can do it.  I do a lot personally to engage on equal terms with hearing people and with local awareness of issues, and what motivates hearing feedback, it is not even necessary to make the point you are deaf.  Deaf still are spectators, so time to join the rest. Deaf arts and Music needs to engage on the hearing level too, or forever be viewed a minority interest and disability focused, so an area mainstream would not go out of their way to support. Much like the old foreign films of the past with subtitles a minority interest.

Also Deaf emulating hearing approaches and music, is mimicry not originality.  Deaf awareness has never worked, and the reason is the deaf don't engage.  For those who say we cannot because of access, I DON'T believe it !

1 comment:

  1. Always a Hearing person will ask of a Deaf person, "Do you know how to Lipread/Speachread"?

    For most Hearies, that puts the Burden of Communication on the Deaf Person. So much it seems to a Deaf Person like a LOADED Question that makes them answer "NO" regardless of their ability to Speechread or Speak.

    Speechreading or Speaking spoken language is a SKILL. Judging a Deaf person by how well they Speak Orally or Speechread makes as much sense as judging a Deaf person by how well they can ICE SKATE. it is a Skill some will have and other will NOT. Regardless of their Intelligence or Education.


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