yutustanaat Mandy Jones (Snuneymuxw First Nation) sharing her Hul’q’umi’num’ language with UVic anthropologist Brian Thom (not in frame) for the “Celebrating Indigenous Languages” Google Earth Voyager project. (Brian Thom/Mandy Jones/Submitted)

Google Earth features B.C. Indigenous language in new audio series

The feature plays sound clips of Indigenous speakers, including voice of Snuneymuxw elder

Google Earth will release a new Voyager story on Aug. 9 that plays sound clips of Indigenous speakers, including the voice of a Snuneymuxw elder.

Voyager is an application that combines visualization with geospatial storytelling. The Celebrating Indigenous Languages story, unveiled on the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, is available in 10 languages internationally and encompasses 55 Indigenous languages in 27 countries, from Australia, India, Ecuador and Chile to Cameroon, Pakistan, Turkey and Finland.

The story highlights an initiative led by University of Victoria (UVic) anthropologist Brian Thom and Indigenous languages teacher yutustanaat Mandy Jones, of the Snuneymuxw First Nation, including words, phrases, a proverb and songs in the Hul’q’umi’num’ language.

READ MORE: The world’s Indigenous speakers gather in B.C.’s capital to revitalize languages

The Hul’q’umi’num’ language is spoken by Island First Nations between Nanoose Bay and Mill Bay, including Snaw-naw-as First Nation, Snuneymuxw First Nation, Cowichan Tribes, Stz’uminus First Nation, Penelakut Tribe, Lyackson First Nation, Halalt First Nation and Malahat First Nation.

“It is critical to value and treasure the wisdom that comes from Hul’q’umi’num’ teachings like this,” Thom said in a UVic release.

“It is an honour and privilege to facilitate long-term research collaborations that celebrate and foreground Indigenous knowledge and relationships to land.”

READ MORE: 60 per cent of all Canadian Indigenous languages are in BC

According to the release, Thom was part of a small team that advised Google in the development of Google Earth’s capacity to play audio clips, a feature he often heard requested by Indigenous communities.

He has been collaborating with yutustanaat and the Hul’q’umi’num’ communities since the early 1990s.

To create the Voyager story, they worked with students from Ladysmith Secondary School to create audio recordings of yutustanaat.

The new Voyager story will be highlighted on the main international Google desktop search page around the world.

READ MORE: NHL called in Cree helps revive, sustain Indigenous language: hockey analyst



karissa.gall@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Grand Forks halves tax increase amid COVID-19

Council also voted to delay implementing increases to utilities until the fall

Snowpack measurements ‘promising’: RDKB

Measurements show Boundary snowpack just high of average range

Don’t travel to vacation homes or cabins, urges Kootenay Boundary district

Regional District of Kootenay Boundary asks residents not to travel to secondary homes

Grand Forks and Boundary cancellations, changes due to COVID-19

This newspaper’s list of community events, institutions that change or cancel due to pandemic

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

UPDATE: UK PM Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after COVID-19 symptoms worse

He has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26

Travellers, travel agents ‘in agony’ over refund policies and customer service

Many Canadian carriers are offering customers flights rebookings or travel vouchers — but not refunds

Introverted and extroverted kids likely to react differently to COVID-19 restrictions

B.C. child psychologist says your parenting approach can’t be one-size fits all in social isolation

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Easter Bunny not a COVID-19 carrier, allowed to do drop offs

World Health Organization grants permission to Bunny as he cannot transfer the virus

Most Read