Analyzing the Political Sentiment of Tweets in Farsi

AAAI Conferences

We examine the question of whether we can automatically classify the sentiment of individual tweets in Farsi, to determine their changing sentiments over time toward a number of trending political topics. Examining tweets in Farsi adds challenges such as the lack of a sentiment lexicon and part-of-speech taggers, frequent use of colloquial words, and unique orthography and morphology characteristics. We have collected over 1 million Tweets on political topics in the Farsi language, with an annotated data set of over 3,000 tweets. We find that an SVM classifier with Brown clustering for feature selection yields a median accuracy of 56% and accuracy as high as 70%. We use this classifier to track dynamic sentiment during a key period of Irans negotiations over its nuclear program.

The Impact of Crowds On News Engagement: A Reddit Case Study

AAAI Conferences

Today, users are reading the news through social platforms. These platforms are built to facilitate crowd engagement, but not necessarily disseminate useful news to inform the masses. Hence, the news that is highly engaged with may not be the news that best informs. While predicting news popularity has been well studied, it has not been studied in the context of crowd manipulations. In this paper, we provide some preliminary results to a longer term project on crowd and platform manipulations of news and news popularity. In particular, we choose to study known features for predicting news popularity and how those features may change on, asocial platform used commonly for news aggregation. Along with this, we explore ways in which users can alter the perception of news through changing the title of an article. We find that news on Reddit is predictable using previously studied sentiment and content features and that posts with titles changed by Reddit users tend to be more popular than posts with the original article title.

Tech majority disagrees with AI warnings from Hawkings, Musk and Gates


Tech star personalities Stephen Hawkings, Elon Musk and Bill Gates warned the public about artificial intelligence (AI). The tech-oriented public and AI experts disagree, though, according to a recent research paper, "Tweeting AI: Perceptions of AI-Tweeters (AIT) vs Expert AI-Tweeters (EAIT)," (pdf) published by researchers at the School of Computing, Informatics and Decision Systems Engineering at the University of Arizona. "Co-occurring patterns tell us that AIT are in general fantasizing about the future whereas EAIT are grounded and realistic." Study authors used statistical analysis, sentiment analysis and machine learning to learn this insight and summarize the study with the conclusions below. Despite the overall negative sentiment of Twitter, overall the 2.3 million tweets analyzed about AI are positive by a large margin.

In the mood: the dynamics of collective sentiments on Twitter Machine Learning

We study the relationship between the sentiment levels of Twitter users and the evolving network structure that the users created by @-mentioning each other. We use a large dataset of tweets to which we apply three sentiment scoring algorithms, including the open source SentiStrength program. Specifically we make three contributions. Firstly we find that people who have potentially the largest communication reach (according to a dynamic centrality measure) use sentiment differently than the average user: for example they use positive sentiment more often and negative sentiment less often. Secondly we find that when we follow structurally stable Twitter communities over a period of months, their sentiment levels are also stable, and sudden changes in community sentiment from one day to the next can in most cases be traced to external events affecting the community. Thirdly, based on our findings, we create and calibrate a simple agent-based model that is capable of reproducing measures of emotive response comparable to those obtained from our empirical dataset.

A Data-Driven Study of View Duration on YouTube

AAAI Conferences

Video watching had emerged as one of the most frequent media activities on the Internet. Yet, little is known about how users watch online video. Using two distinct YouTube datasets, a set of random YouTube videos crawled from the Web and a set of videos watched by participants tracked by a Chrome extension, we examine whether and how indicators of collective preferences and reactions are associated with view duration of videos. We show that video view duration is positively associated with the video's view count, the number of likes per view, and the negative sentiment in the comments. These metrics and reactions have a significant predictive power over the duration the video is watched by individuals. Our findings provide a more precise understandings of user engagement with video content in social media beyond view count.