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The route description task is designed to collect comparable conversational data from different participants: two speakers negotiate the movement of a toy figure through a landscape, without being able to see each other's landscapes.


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  • Patrick Jahn built two nearly identical models of the village of Raunsepna. They are separated by a screen.
  • The hearer sits on the left and the main speaker on the right. On the speaker's side, a path through the model village is marked with a piece of string.
  • Deviating from Wilkins’ idea, Patrick moved the focus from buildings and cars to plants, fruits, animals and the river. This way, the model better resembles the everyday environment of the participants.
  • Each participant has a small toy figure to move in the model. Two Qaqet speakers from Raunsepna participate in each recording.
  • There are two tasks: In the first, the participants discuss their models and the small differences between them. In the second task, the speaker explains the path marked on her side, while the hearer follows it with the toy figure on his side - without being able to see the speaker's side.

Process and changes

In the process of recording, we noticed some problems: limes were mistaken for coconuts, and raspberries had to be replaced with betel nuts, so that participants could better relate to the landscape. Some participants had problems with the route description task and instead invented a story based on the places and gardens in the model. One participant didn’t describe the route by using the model, but rather by using the real-life village of Raunsepna, thus confusing the listener.