A user-centric model of voting intention from Social Media
Vasileios Lampos, Daniel Preotiuc-Pietro and Trevor Cohn
The 51st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL 2013)
Sofia, Bulgaria, August 4-9, 2013
Social Media contain a multitude of user opinions which can be used to predict real-world phenomena in many domains including politics, finance and health. Most existing methods treat these problems as linear regression, learning to relate word frequencies and other simple features to a known response variable (e.g., voting intention polls or financial indicators). These techniques require very careful filtering of the input texts, as most Social Media posts are irrelevant to the task. In this paper, we present a novel approach which performs high quality filtering automatically, through modelling not just words but also users, framed as a bilinear model with a sparse regulariser. We also consider the problem of modelling groups of related output variables, using a structured multi-task regularisation method. Our experiments on voting intention prediction demonstrate strong performance over large-scale input from Twitter on two distinct case studies, outperforming competitive baselines.
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