Towards an Annotation Scheme for Complex Laughter in Speech Corpora

Khiet P. Truong, Jürgen Trouvain, Michel-Pierre Jansen


Although laughter research has gained quite some interest over the past few years, a shared description of how to annotate laughter and its sub-units is still missing. We present a first attempt towards an annotation scheme that contributes to improving the homogeneity and transparency with which laughter is annotated. This includes the integration of respiratory noises as well as stretches of speech-laughs, and to a limited extend to smiled speech and short silent intervals. Inter-annotator agreement is assessed while applying the scheme to different corpora where laughter is evoked through different methods and varying settings. Annotating laughter becomes more complex when the situation in which laughter occurs becomes more spontaneous and social. There is a substantial disagreement among the annotators with respect to temporal alignment (when does a unit start and when does it end) and unit classification, particularly the determination of starts/ends of laughter episodes. In summary, this detailed laughter annotation study reflects the need for better investigations of the various components of laughter.


 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2019-1557

Cite as: Truong, K.P., Trouvain, J., Jansen, M. (2019) Towards an Annotation Scheme for Complex Laughter in Speech Corpora. Proc. Interspeech 2019, 529-533, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2019-1557.


@inproceedings{Truong2019,
  author={Khiet P. Truong and Jürgen Trouvain and Michel-Pierre Jansen},
  title={{Towards an Annotation Scheme for Complex Laughter in Speech Corpora}},
  year=2019,
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2019},
  pages={529--533},
  doi={10.21437/Interspeech.2019-1557},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/Interspeech.2019-1557}
}