FIFA to broadcast matches in sign language

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Pretoria - Video reports from all 64 matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa will be broadcast in International Sign, on, said the world football governing body on Thursday.

For the first time, FIFA's official website and the FIFA World Cup will enable deaf and people with hearing impairments across the globe to follow all 64 matches of the showpiece event even more comprehensively.

International Sign, also known as IS, is an international auxiliary language used at international meetings such as the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) Congress and events such as the Deaflympics.

The WFD represents approximately 70 million deaf people worldwide, which assists in making sign language available to deaf people, especially regarding matters of education and information.

FIFA President Joseph Blatter said football is a universal sport and it must be accessible to everyone.

"We are therefore delighted to be offering this service for people with hearing impairments and the deaf. By producing these video reports with International Sign, FIFA is serving the needs of over 70 million people," he said.

All International Sign match report videos will be available at FIFA's official website, soon after each game.