Deaf People Communicating via SMS, TTY, Relay Service, Fax, and Computers in Australia

Date of this Version


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Power, Mary R., Power, Des and Horstmanshof, Louise (2007) Deaf People Communicating via SMS, TTY, Relay Service, Fax, and Computers in Australia, Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, Vol. 12, Iss. 1, pp. 80-92.

A full text version of this article is available via the Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education homepage.
Copyright © Oxford University Press, 2006.

2006 HERDC submission


Despite the expansion of Deaf people's use of communication technology little is published about how they use electronic communication in their social and working lives and the implications for their concepts of identity and community. Australia is an ideal research base because the use of a range of technologies is widespread there. To gain access to a wide age range of people who identify as Deaf, members of the national organization, the Australian Association of the Deaf, were surveyed by mail. Results showed that Short Message Service (SMS), telephone typewriters (TTY), voice/TTY relay services, fax, and e-mail were used regularly. Deaf users are discerning of the purposes for which they use each method: SMS for social and personal interactions, TTY for longer communications and (via the relay service) with people and services without TTYs, fax for business and social contact, and computers for personal and business e-mails as well as Web browsing, accessing chat rooms, word processing, games, and study.



This document has been peer reviewed.