Jianfeng Chi


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Retrieval Enhanced Data Augmentation for Question Answering on Privacy Policies
Md Rizwan Parvez | Jianfeng Chi | Wasi Uddin Ahmad | Yuan Tian | Kai-Wei Chang
Proceedings of the 17th Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Prior studies in privacy policies frame the question answering (QA) task as identifying the most relevant text segment or a list of sentences from a policy document given a user query. Existing labeled datasets are heavily imbalanced (only a few relevant segments), limiting the QA performance in this domain. In this paper, we develop a data augmentation framework based on ensembling retriever models that captures the relevant text segments from unlabeled policy documents and expand the positive examples in the training set. In addition, to improve the diversity and quality of the augmented data, we leverage multiple pre-trained language models (LMs) and cascaded them with noise reduction oracles. Using our augmented data on the PrivacyQA benchmark, we elevate the existing baseline by a large margin (10% F1) and achieve a new state-of-the-art F1 score of 50%. Our ablation studies provide further insights into the effectiveness of our approach.

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PLUE: Language Understanding Evaluation Benchmark for Privacy Policies in English
Jianfeng Chi | Wasi Uddin Ahmad | Yuan Tian | Kai-Wei Chang
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Privacy policies provide individuals with information about their rights and how their personal information is handled. Natural language understanding (NLU) technologies can support individuals and practitioners to understand better privacy practices described in lengthy and complex documents. However, existing efforts that use NLU technologies are limited by processing the language in a way exclusive to a single task focusing on certain privacy practices. To this end, we introduce the Privacy Policy Language Understanding Evaluation (PLUE) benchmark, a multi-task benchmark for evaluating the privacy policy language understanding across various tasks. We also collect a large corpus of privacy policies to enable privacy policy domain-specific language model pre-training. We evaluate several generic pre-trained language models and continue pre-training them on the collected corpus. We demonstrate that domain-specific continual pre-training offers performance improvements across all tasks. The code and models are released at https://github.com/JFChi/PLUE.


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Conditional Supervised Contrastive Learning for Fair Text Classification
Jianfeng Chi | William Shand | Yaodong Yu | Kai-Wei Chang | Han Zhao | Yuan Tian
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

Contrastive representation learning has gained much attention due to its superior performance in learning representations from both image and sequential data. However, the learned representations could potentially lead to performance disparities in downstream tasks, such as increased silencing of underrepresented groups in toxicity comment classification. In light of this challenge, in this work, we study learning fair representations that satisfy a notion of fairness known as equalized odds for text classification via contrastive learning. Specifically, we first theoretically analyze the connections between learning representations with a fairness constraint and conditional supervised contrastive objectives, and then propose to use conditional supervised contrastive objectives to learn fair representations for text classification. We conduct experiments on two text datasets to demonstrate the effectiveness of our approaches in balancing the trade-offs between task performance and bias mitigation among existing baselines for text classification. Furthermore, we also show that the proposed methods are stable in different hyperparameter settings.


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Intent Classification and Slot Filling for Privacy Policies
Wasi Ahmad | Jianfeng Chi | Tu Le | Thomas Norton | Yuan Tian | Kai-Wei Chang
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)

Understanding privacy policies is crucial for users as it empowers them to learn about the information that matters to them. Sentences written in a privacy policy document explain privacy practices, and the constituent text spans convey further specific information about that practice. We refer to predicting the privacy practice explained in a sentence as intent classification and identifying the text spans sharing specific information as slot filling. In this work, we propose PolicyIE, an English corpus consisting of 5,250 intent and 11,788 slot annotations spanning 31 privacy policies of websites and mobile applications. PolicyIE corpus is a challenging real-world benchmark with limited labeled examples reflecting the cost of collecting large-scale annotations from domain experts. We present two alternative neural approaches as baselines, (1) intent classification and slot filling as a joint sequence tagging and (2) modeling them as a sequence-to-sequence (Seq2Seq) learning task. The experiment results show that both approaches perform comparably in intent classification, while the Seq2Seq method outperforms the sequence tagging approach in slot filling by a large margin. We perform a detailed error analysis to reveal the challenges of the proposed corpus.


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PolicyQA: A Reading Comprehension Dataset for Privacy Policies
Wasi Ahmad | Jianfeng Chi | Yuan Tian | Kai-Wei Chang
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2020

Privacy policy documents are long and verbose. A question answering (QA) system can assist users in finding the information that is relevant and important to them. Prior studies in this domain frame the QA task as retrieving the most relevant text segment or a list of sentences from the policy document given a question. On the contrary, we argue that providing users with a short text span from policy documents reduces the burden of searching the target information from a lengthy text segment. In this paper, we present PolicyQA, a dataset that contains 25,017 reading comprehension style examples curated from an existing corpus of 115 website privacy policies. PolicyQA provides 714 human-annotated questions written for a wide range of privacy practices. We evaluate two existing neural QA models and perform rigorous analysis to reveal the advantages and challenges offered by PolicyQA.