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From:  Valerie Sutton
Date:  Sun Mar 19, 2000  4:21 pm
Subject:  Re: SW Video Transcription Course Online

On 3/19/00, Stefan Woehrmann wrote:
"Yes - great idea ! On the other hand! I canīt imagine that all your
other Deaf friends - skilled in SW - shouldnīt be able, motivated,
inerested .. I mean - isnīt it possible to ask some of them to assist
in basic teaching?

There is a big need to make the beginners in all these new countries
confident and strong during the starting phase. They should become as
competent as possible to create their own materials, answer questions
of new beginners , help with beginner questions and so forth.
Therefore maybe the idea of this "buddy" system . Kind of personal
partner - one to one. As soon as Germany gets awake with SW there
will be a lot of work for me - But at first I need to be more and
more experienced. Iīm working with SW almost 4 hours each day! Iīm
writing lots of words for my dictionary - and from time to time I
hesitate and would like to get your feedback . But I noticed that you
are so much under pressure that I hold back as long as possible to
ask the next single question! Stefan "

SignWriting List
March 19, 2000

Above is an excerpt from a recent private email message from Stefan
in Germany. Stefan agreed that I could post it to the List...I want
to respond publicly so you all understand something...

I am offering the new "SW Video Transcription Course Online" as the
"buddy system" that Stefan mentions above.

There seems to be two misunderstandings from people who have not met
me, or who have not seen me in recent years:


1. Misunderstanding One:
Valerie has a staff of Deaf people called the DAC, who work daily on

1. Reality One:
Not true! I work alone in my home, and run everything myself - I
fulfill all orders, all web postings, all printing and so forth. I
have not seen our DAC members for months...some of them, for years.

So then who are the DAC members? Back several years ago, we did have
paid DAC staff members who did work with me, but not in recent years.
I care about them, and consider them my dear friends, and they are
still DAC members in my heart. I hope someday to start working with
them again ;-)

Why not now? Because all funding is going to software development,
which is extremely costly.


2. Misunderstanding Two:
People in the USA are more skilled with SignWriting than other
countries, since Valerie lives and works in the USA.

2. Reality Two:
Absolutely NOT true! The USA is behind other countries. If I were not
donating materials to the schools in the USA, there would be no
school using SignWriting right now in my own country.

Of course there are always individuals who learn it, and I know there
are hundreds in the USA who have...but they are not in contact with
me...I have never met most of them and do not know I
cannot turn to them to teach anyone!

Perhaps as the Deaf children in Albuquerque, New Mexico, grow up
learning SignWriting...maybe they can become teachers someday...but
right now I have no buddy system to offer...except for the
SignWriting List!


So I hope you will consider the new "SW Video Transcription Course
Online" as the "buddy system" you mention above...perhaps in time,
you can create your own network of SignWriting users...

Val ;-)


Valerie Sutton


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