An exploration of Deaf telecommunication processes and associated social issues in South Africa

Marisa Liebenberg, Hugo Lotriet

Abstract


This paper presents the results of an exploratory investigation into telecommunications practices and challenges among the Deaf in South Africa.

Telecommunication products like cell phones, TTY’s, sMessage terminals, e-mail, fax messaging, instant messaging (IM) were
some of the technologies investigated. The research shows that the Deaf considers IM as the most successful technology for both business and social communication. E-mail was rated most often used for business communication, where as e-mail and SMS were rated most used for social communication. The main drawbacks experienced by deaf users of telecommunications technologies related to connecting with and understanding of people.

The research findings indicate that the Deaf would like to see heightened public awareness of deafness and its challenges in
telecommunication.

Keywords


Deaf Telecommunication; Hearing loss; Social Factors

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18489/sacj.v45i0.35

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