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

Nak’azdli and UNBC form partnership to preserve inter-generational stories

“Stories can empower. Stories can bring people together. Stories can be instructive,”… Continue reading

B.C. premier talks forestry, service needs with handful of northern mayors in Prince George

Prince George meeting completes premier’s tour of Kitimat, Terrace, Fort St. James and Quesnel

Indigenous LNG supporters chide human rights advocates over pipeline comments

Coastal GasLink has signed agreements with 20 elected First Nation councils along the pipeline’s 670-kilometre path

Cluculz Lake fire leads to death of occupant

RCMP said mobile home was engulfed in fire when they arrived on scene

VIDEO: Rare ‘ice circle’ spotted on Kamloops river

An ice circle or ice pan, has formed in the chilly waters just east of the Yellowhead Bridge

Uber, Lyft approved for ride-hailing in Lower Mainland

Kater Technologies Inc.’s application was rejected

B.C. man rescued after getting trapped headfirst in well as water level rose

The rescue involved crews from Oak Bay and Saanich

Investigators in wildfire-torn Australia head to site of B.C. airtanker crash

The B.C. government sends condolences to Port Alberni-owned Coulson Aviation

RCMP investigating sexual allegation against Lower Mainland police officer

Delta officer suspended while the alleged off-duty incident involving a co-worker is investigated

Former Mountie, sports coach convicted of sex abuse in B.C. granted day parole

Alan Davidson was sentenced to almost six years for abusing seven boys in the late 1970s and early 1990s

VIDEO: Person in wheelchair narrowly avoids collision with car in Kelowna

There were no injuries in the scary looking near-accident last week in Rutland

Here’s what Canada is doing to stop the coronavirus from getting in

Health officials are monitoring multiple possible cases in Canada

B.C. still struggling to control non-resident medical care fraud

Unpaid bills, out-of-province claimants a costly legacy of MSP

Most Read