gender voice variants

Michael Everson everson at
Thu Dec 20 12:28:11 CET 2012

On 20 Dec 2012, at 04:18, Peter Constable <petercon at> wrote:

> You're describing scenarios that go beyond the intended scenarios I had in mind.

You said:

On 18 Dec 2012, at 03:48, Peter Constable <petercon at> wrote:

> I was thinking about this the other day dealing with the male/female voice variants for Nokia Maps. I don’t recall that anyone has ever proposed variant subtags for male voice vs. female voice for use on speech assets. (I suppose child voice might be another relevant variant.) Does it seem appropriate to handle these voice distinctions via variant subtags on a language tag?

It seems to me that this performance aspect is on another level of abstraction than the level of language tagging, if it is only a matter of a text-to-speech voice. 

<lang="sco-ulster"><voice="female">"Jest a thimel," </voice><voice="narrator">said Alice in bad furm.</voice></lang>

<lang="sco-ulster"><voice="male">"Haun ir ower here," </voice><voice="narrator">said the Dodo.</voice></lang>

> On 19 Dec 2012, at 19:21, "Broome, Karen" <Karen.Broome at> wrote:
>> Maybe I'm missing your point, but are you saying that Czech and Portuguese aren't mainstream enough? In both languages, there are spoken and written variations between male and female speakers. This is not all that uncommon.
> Once again: A man or male bot voice may read aloud a text in which a woman speaks and uses womanly grammar; a woman or female bot voice may read aloud a text in which a man speaks and uses manly grammar. 
> The gender of the reader is independent of what the reader says. The reader may be speaking for himself or herself, or the reader may be reading a text written by an unknown other. 

Michael Everson *

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