Events Calendar

Deception Detection Research for News Verification

Wednesday, September 20, 2023
12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
FIMS and Nursing Building (FNB)
Room: 4130 (or Zoom)
Headshot of Victoria Rubin outside, wearing a light coloured jacket.

"Deception Detection Research for News Verification: Automation and the Human Mind"

Presented by Victoria Rubin as part of the FIMS Seminar Series.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

Attend in-person: FNB 4130
Attend online: Register on Zoom

Abstract: Artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) advances in detecting mis- or disinformation are based heavily on psychological research, lie detection, and fact-checking. Misinformation is unintentional spread of deceptive, inaccurate, or misleading information, while disinformation is its intentional counterpart. Either way, the result is problematic: various “fakes” proliferate online, and nobody wants to be ill-informed. So, why does the problem persist? What are the underlying causes? What are the solutions? Dr. Rubin discusses three interacting causal factors that require simultaneous interventions. Human minds, susceptible to being deceived and manipulated, can be more vigorously trained in digital literacy. Toxic digital environments need further legislative oversight. AI can also, at least in part, enhance our human intelligence, given the scale of the problem. Rubin exemplifies systematic analyses that sift through large volumes of textual data. They can distinguish verified truthful language from various types of “fakes” such as clickbait, satire, other falsehoods, and rumors. Success rates vary. If more accurate and reliable systems are made available and routinely used by the general public as assistive technology (like spam filters), the problem of mis- and disinformation can be dampened, when combined with education and regulation.

Dr. Victoria Rubin is an Associate Professor and the Director of the Language and Information Technologies Research Lab (LiT.RL) at the Faculty of Information and Media Studies (FIMS) at Western. She teaches graduate courses on Organization of Information, Multilingual Information Access, and Natural Language Processing (NLP). As a researcher, she specializes in information retrieval and NLP techniques that enable analyses of texts to identify, extract, and organize structured knowledge. Her Lab studies complex human information behaviors that are, at least partly, expressed through language such as deception, uncertainty, credibility, and emotions. Her recently published book, Misinformation and Disinformation: Detecting Fakes with the Eye and AI (2022) overviews the past decade of her Lab’s deception detection and news verification research in the context of digital text-based media.

Faculty of Information and Media Studies
Karen Kueneman

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