Far-reaching web services already saved language

After pushing broadband Internet access in remote communities, the B.C. government yesterday commissioned a study to find out what impact the program is having.


Announcing the $221,000 study to be carried out by Simon Fraser University researchers, Labour and Citizens’ Services Minister Olga Ilich said B.C. is “far in advance” of other Canadian jurisdictions.


Already there have been noticeable payoffs, she added. For example, when the program was launched two years ago, only three Ktunaxa First Nation elders still spoke the 10,000-year old language.


Those elders have been recording the language in a digital format and making it available on the Internet.


In doing so, they are also telling their peoples’ stories, said Ilich.

“You’re getting this rich oral history that is being captured at the same time,” she said. Results of the study are expected in March 2008.

wise spending

Olga Ilich, above, said the government wants to be sure the plan is a wise investment of taxpayer dollars.