Groundbreaking FirstVoices Chat app set to bring texting in First Nations languages to iPhone

Via Scoop.itMediaMentor

An innovative mobile application that will allow First Nations people to send text messages written in indigenous languages is being unveiled in Vancouver. [excerpt] “We’ve had First Nations youth clamouring for this for a couple years now,” Brand said by phone from the FPHLCC office in Brentwood Bay. “Ever since cellphones have been used by youth to text, First Nations youth have wanted to be able to text in language, just as an extension of their everyday literacy skills.” According to Brand, after downloading FirstVoices Chat, users will be asked to log in to Facebook or Google Talk, and then pick a language, such as Halq’eméylem, which is spoken by members of the Sto:lo Nation in the Fraser Valley. Then they’ll be able to press a button to replace the touchscreen QWERTY keypad with a First Nations language keypad, complete with all the necessary characters. […] “The goal is to provide First Nations British Columbians and, in fact, First Nations across the continent with the same access to literacy tools that you and I expect as speakers of mainstream languages,” […]


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