Forensic study of a case involving SMS text-to-speech conversion


  • Martin Jessen
  • Stefan Gfroerer
  • Olaf Köster



Forensic speech decoding, speech synthesis, test-to-speech, Short Message Service (SMS), Turkish, German


The process of decoding the content of a message involving Short Message-to-speech conversion is described in the form of a forensic case study. The intelligibility of the message was low, primarily due to the fact that the written input to the text-to-speech system was inTurkish although the system was designed for text-to-speech conversion in German. This created some form of synthesised Turkish with a German “accent”. It is shown how “spectrogram reading” can be employed in the task of deriving phonetic categories from the signal of the synthetic speech message. In order to obtain a maximally accurate estimate of the input typed by the sender, one disputed passage of the SMS-to-speech message was subjected to a simulation. It is described how a full match between the case material and the simulated passage was obtained, despite typographical errors and incorrect Turkish orthography on the part of the sender.



How to Cite

Jessen, M., Gfroerer, S., & Köster, O. (2003). Forensic study of a case involving SMS text-to-speech conversion. International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law, 10(1), 113–137.




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