Devin Gaffney


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SemEval-2022 Task 8: Multilingual news article similarity
Xi Chen | Ali Zeynali | Chico Camargo | Fabian Flöck | Devin Gaffney | Przemyslaw Grabowicz | Scott Hale | David Jurgens | Mattia Samory
Proceedings of the 16th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval-2022)

Thousands of new news articles appear daily in outlets in different languages. Understanding which articles refer to the same story can not only improve applications like news aggregation but enable cross-linguistic analysis of media consumption and attention. However, assessing the similarity of stories in news articles is challenging due to the different dimensions in which a story might vary, e.g., two articles may have substantial textual overlap but describe similar events that happened years apart. To address this challenge, we introduce a new dataset of nearly 10,000 news article pairs spanning 18 language combinations annotated for seven dimensions of similarity as SemEval 2022 Task 8. Here, we present an overview of the task, the best performing submissions, and the frontiers and challenges for measuring multilingual news article similarity. While the participants of this SemEval task contributed very strong models, achieving up to 0.818 correlation with gold standard labels across languages, human annotators are capable of reaching higher correlations, suggesting space for further progress.


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Claim Matching Beyond English to Scale Global Fact-Checking
Ashkan Kazemi | Kiran Garimella | Devin Gaffney | Scott Hale
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Manual fact-checking does not scale well to serve the needs of the internet. This issue is further compounded in non-English contexts. In this paper, we discuss claim matching as a possible solution to scale fact-checking. We define claim matching as the task of identifying pairs of textual messages containing claims that can be served with one fact-check. We construct a novel dataset of WhatsApp tipline and public group messages alongside fact-checked claims that are first annotated for containing “claim-like statements” and then matched with potentially similar items and annotated for claim matching. Our dataset contains content in high-resource (English, Hindi) and lower-resource (Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil) languages. We train our own embedding model using knowledge distillation and a high-quality “teacher” model in order to address the imbalance in embedding quality between the low- and high-resource languages in our dataset. We provide evaluations on the performance of our solution and compare with baselines and existing state-of-the-art multilingual embedding models, namely LASER and LaBSE. We demonstrate that our performance exceeds LASER and LaBSE in all settings. We release our annotated datasets, codebooks, and trained embedding model to allow for further research.