Fabian Flöck


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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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How Does Counterfactually Augmented Data Impact Models for Social Computing Constructs?
Indira Sen | Mattia Samory | Fabian Flöck | Claudia Wagner | Isabelle Augenstein
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

As NLP models are increasingly deployed in socially situated settings such as online abusive content detection, it is crucial to ensure that these models are robust. One way of improving model robustness is to generate counterfactually augmented data (CAD) for training models that can better learn to distinguish between core features and data artifacts. While models trained on this type of data have shown promising out-of-domain generalizability, it is still unclear what the sources of such improvements are. We investigate the benefits of CAD for social NLP models by focusing on three social computing constructs — sentiment, sexism, and hate speech. Assessing the performance of models trained with and without CAD across different types of datasets, we find that while models trained on CAD show lower in-domain performance, they generalize better out-of-domain. We unpack this apparent discrepancy using machine explanations and find that CAD reduces model reliance on spurious features. Leveraging a novel typology of CAD to analyze their relationship with model performance, we find that CAD which acts on the construct directly or a diverse set of CAD leads to higher performance.


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On the Reliability and Validity of Detecting Approval of Political Actors in Tweets
Indira Sen | Fabian Flöck | Claudia Wagner
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Social media sites like Twitter possess the potential to complement surveys that measure political opinions and, more specifically, political actors’ approval. However, new challenges related to the reliability and validity of social-media-based estimates arise. Various sentiment analysis and stance detection methods have been developed and used in previous research to measure users’ political opinions based on their content on social media. In this work, we attempt to gauge the efficacy of untargeted sentiment, targeted sentiment, and stance detection methods in labeling various political actors’ approval by benchmarking them across several datasets. We also contrast the performance of these pretrained methods that can be used in an off-the-shelf (OTS) manner against a set of models trained on minimal custom data. We find that OTS methods have low generalizability on unseen and familiar targets, while low-resource custom models are more robust. Our work sheds light on the strengths and limitations of existing methods proposed for understanding politicians’ approval from tweets.