Project to scan ‘social pollution’ on Twitter

New York, Oct 18 :

Researchers at the Indiana University in the US are working on an ambitious project to collect and analyse ‘social pollution’ that is spreading on social media like Twitter.


Funded by the US National Science Foundation, the project named “Truthy” will study what researchers call “social epidemics”, including how memes (ideas that spread from person to person within a culture) propagate, Washington Post reported.

The targets for researchers to study are ‘political smears’, ‘astroturfing’ and other forms of ‘misinformation’ on social media.

The project aims to use a sophisticated combination of text and data mining, social network analysis, and complex network models to distinguish between good and bad memes, the report added.

Truthy will also evaluate whether accounts are expressing positive or negative sentiments towards memes.

“The research could mitigate the diffusion of false and misleading ideas and detect hate speech,” researchers were quoted as saying.


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