International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL <p><em>The International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law</em>&nbsp;is a peer-reviewed journal that publishes articles on any aspect of forensic language, speech and audio analysis.</p> en-US <p>© Equinox Publishing Ltd.</p> <p>For information regarding our Open Access policy, <a title="Open access policy." href="Full%20details of our conditions related to copyright can be found by clicking here.">click here</a>.</p> peter.french@york.ac.uk (Peter French, Michael Jessen, Alison Johnson, Frances Rock) aparkin@equinoxpub.com (Ailsa Parkin) Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 OJS 3.2.0.3 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss 60 Editorial http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17247 Peter French Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17247 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Discourse-information-based automatic evaluation of public legal education texts http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17262 Juan Liu Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17262 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Multimodal construction of ‘rule of law’ in Chinese anti-corruption public service advertisements http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17263 Yujie Liu Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17263 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Improving objectivity, balance and forensic fitness in LAAP http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17258 <p>This paper is a response to Yaron Matras’s article ‘Duly verified? Language analysis in UK asylum applications of Syrian refugees’. Matras evaluates 50 reports by the Stockholm-based agency Verified AB. He introduces his own approach, which he calls ‘inductive-dialectological’, and claims that it addresses many of the problems in Verified’s approach. We respond on a number of fronts. We interpret the role and duty of the expert performing language analysis in the asylum procedure as essentially the same as that of a forensic expert in criminal law. We argue that Matras’s approach fails to adhere to principles of sound forensic evidence, thereby risking biased conclusions. Furthermore, we contend that Matras’s view on the question to be addressed is not in line with the trier of fact’s requirements. We also consider the need for a fixed conclusion scale, the institutional demands driving casework and the large number of disparate conclusions among experts. We conclude with some advice to asylum courts and LAAP practitioners.</p> Jim Hoskin, Tina Cambier-Langeveld, Paul Foulkes Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17258 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Book announcements http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17265 Richard Powell Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17265 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Who owns your voice? Linguistic and legal perspectives on the relationship between vocal distinctiveness and the rights of the individual speaker http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17248 <p>Only in very recent times has the concept of ‘ownership’ of a human voice begun to demand proper consideration in terms of its legal implications. The current lack of clarity with respect to the rights afforded to individuals and organisations in this area is something that must be addressed as a matter of some urgency, given that voice samples are now collected on an unprecedented scale, with or without the knowledge or consent of the person(s) who produced the captured speech. In this article we explore the issue of voice ownership from a variety of perspectives, starting with an attempt to define what the voice actually is, and then considering how representations of a talker’s voice at greater or lesser levels of concreteness (or ‘tangibility’) can be misappropriated and misused in unethical or unlawful ways.</p> Dominic Watt, Peter S. Harrison, Lily Cabot-King Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17248 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 An illusion of understanding http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17250 Aneta Pavlenko, Elizabeth Hepford, Scott Jarvis Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17250 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Tuning the performance of automatic speaker recognition in different conditions http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17252 <div><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">Automatic speaker recognition applications have often been described as a ‘black </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">box’. This study explores the benefit of tuning procedures (condition adaptation and </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">reference normalisation) implemented in an i-vector PLDA framework ASR system, </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">VOCALISE. These procedures enable users to open the black box to a certain degree. </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">Subsets of two 100-speaker databases, one of Czech and the other of Persian </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">male speakers, are used for the baseline condition and for the tuning procedures. </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">The effect of tuning with cross-language material, as well as the effect of simulated </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">voice disguise, achieved by raising the fundamental frequency by four semitones </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">and resonance characteristics by 8%, are also examined. The results show superior </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">recognition performance (EER) for Persian than Czech in the baseline condition, </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">but an opposite result in the simulated disguise condition; possible reasons for this </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">are discussed. Overall, the study suggests that both condition adaptation and reference </span></span><span style='font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;'><span style="font-size: 16px;">normalisation are beneficial to recognition performance.</span></span></div> Radek Skarnitzl, Maral Asiaee, Mandana Nourbakhsh Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17252 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 Litigating without speaking legalese http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17255 <p>The increasing number of unrepresented litigants in various jurisdictions raises the question of what challenges these lay people face in their access to justice. This article seeks to examine this by conducting a small ethnographic study and survey in Hong Kong. Based on 6 hours of courtroom observation in two cases and 8 hours of pre-trial, during trial and post-trial interview data obtained from 7 sessions, we show that unrepresented litigants may find navigating difficult legal phrases, legal homonymy, legal genre and linguistic repertoire in court particularly challenging. They also risk overestimating the merit of their case when they deploy lay strategies (i.e. a translation approach or a literal reading approach) to legal interpretation and case preparation. The survey results lend support to our ethnographic study by revealing why unrepresented litigants seem to be ill-prepared for their cases in the eyes of legal professionals. We conclude that unrepresented litigants face both linguistic and legal challenges during their participation in legal processes, and often these challenges are intertwined. We therefore suggest that both linguistic accommodation and legal assistance are essential to help unrepresented litigants participate effectively in legal processes. This is especially important in the adversarial courtrooms of common law jurisdictions, to ensure access to justice for the general public.</p> Matthew W.L. Yeung, Janny H.C. Leung Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17255 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 IAFPA 2019 conference report http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17260 Katherine Earnshaw, Sula Ross Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17260 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000 <i>Shallow Equality and Symbolic Jurisprudence in Multilingual Legal Orders</i> by Janny H. C. Leung (2019) http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17264 <div><em>Shallow Equality and Symbolic Jurisprudence in Multilingual Legal Orders </em>by&nbsp;Janny H. C. Leung (2019), Oxford University Press (Oxford Studies in Language and Law) 305 pp</div> Javier Moreno-Rivero Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. http://journal.equinoxpub.com/IJSLL/article/view/17264 Mon, 02 Mar 2020 00:00:00 +0000