CFP: 1st Workshop on Abusive Language Online

Wednesday, August 2, 2017 - 6:00pm to Thursday, August 3, 2017 - 6:00pm

ALW1: 1st Workshop on Abusive Language Online


The last few years have seen a surge in abusive online behavior, with governments, social media platforms, and individuals struggling to cope with the consequences and to produce effective methods to combat it. In many cases, online forums, comment sections, and social media interaction have become sites of bullying, scapegoating, and hate speech. These forms of online aggression not only poison the social climate of the online communities that experience it, but can also provoke physical violence and harm.

Addressing abusive language necessitates a multi-disciplinary approach that requires knowledge from several fields, including (but not limited to): media studies, natural language processing (NLP), psychology, sociology, law, gender studies, communications, and critical race theory. NLP, as a field that directly works with computationally analyzing language, is in a unique position to develop automated methods to analyse, detect, and filter abusive language. By working across disciplinary divides, researchers in all these fields can produce a comprehensive approach to abusive language that blends together computational, social and legal methods.

In this one-day workshop, we therefore want to bring researchers of various disciplines together to discuss approaches to abusive language. The workshop will include invited speakers and panelists from fields within and outside of NLP, as well as submitted papers from researchers across all areas.  In addition, the workshop will host an “unshared task”.

Paper Topics

We invite long and short papers on any of the following general topics:

  • Assessment of all current methods of addressing abusive language
  • The social, personal and cultural effects of abusive language online
  • Legal ramifications of measures taken against abusive language use
  • NLP models and methods for abusive language detection
  • Application of NLP tools to analyze social media content and other large data sets
  • NLP models for cross-lingual abusive language detection
  • Best practices for using NLP techniques in watchdog settings
  • Development of corpora and annotation guidelines

Unshared task

In order to encourage focused contributions, we direct researchers to consider the following list of data sets an unshared task, where participants can choose from a list of datasets to conduct their experiments. This list includes:

  • Twitter Data Set [Waseem and Hovy, NAACL 2016]
  • German Twitter Data Set [Ross et al. NLP4CMC 2016]
  • Wikipedia Abusive Language Data Set [Wulczyn et al., Preprint available here]

Submission Information

We will be using the ACL 2017 Submission Guidelines. Authors are invited to submit a full paper of up to 8 pages of content with up to 2 additional pages for references. We also invite short papers of up to 4 pages of content, including 2 additional pages for references.

Accepted papers will be given an additional page of content to address reviewer comments.  We also invite papers which describe systems are also invited to give a demo of their system. If you would like to present a demo in addition to presenting the paper, please make sure to select either "full paper + demo" or "short paper + demo" under "Submission Category" in the START submission page.

Previously published papers cannot be accepted. The submissions will be reviewed by the program committee. As reviewing will be blind, please ensure that papers are anonymous. Self-references that reveal the author's identity, e.g., "We previously showed (Smith, 1991) ...", should be avoided. Instead, use citations such as "Smith previously showed (Smith, 1991) ...".

We have also included conflict of interest in the submission form. You should mark all potential reviewers who have been authors on the paper, are from the same research group or institution, or who have seen versions of this paper or discussed it with you.

We will be using the START conference system to manage submissions.

Important Dates

Organizing Committee

  • Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, Brown University
  • Dirk Hovy, University of Copenhagen
  • Joel Tetreault, Grammarly
  • Zeerak Waseem, University of Copenhagen

Program Committee/Reviewers

The following researchers have agreed to serve on the program committee as reviewers.

  • Swati Agarwal, IIIT Delhi, India
  • Fiona Barnett, Duke University, USA
  • Darina Benikova, University of Duisburg-Essen, LTL, Germany
  • Simone Browne, UT Austin, USA
  • Anneke Buffone, University of Pennsylvania, USA
  • Pete Burnap, Cardiff University, United Kingdom
  • Christina Capodilupo, Teachers College, Columbia University, USA
  • Guillermo Carbonell, University Duisburg-Essen, Germany
  • Pedro Cardoso, Synthesio, France
  • Gabriella Coleman, McGill, Canada
  • Bart Desmet, LT3, Ghent University, Belgium
  • Lucas Dixon, Jigsaw, USA
  • Nemanja Djuric, Uber ATC, USA
  • Jacob Eisenstein, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA
  • Hugo Jair Escalante, INAOE, Mexico
  • Lucie Flekova, UKP Lab, TU Darmstadt, Germany
  • Matthew Fuller, Goldsmith, UK
  • Tanton Gibbs, Facebook, USA
  • Lee Gillam, University of Surrey, United Kingdom
  • Jen Golbeck, University of Maryland, USA
  • Erica Greene, New York Times, USA
  • Kevin Hamilton, University of Illinois, USA
  • Sora Han, University of California, Irvine, USA
  • Christopher Homan, Rochester Institute of Technology, USA
  • Veronique Hoste, Ghent University, Belgium
  • Ruihong Huang, Texas A&M, USA
  • Els Lefever, LT3, Ghent University, Belgium
  • Shuhua Liu, Arcada University of Applied Sciences, Finland
  • Elizabeth Losh, College of William and Mary, USA
  • Shervin Malmasi, Harvard Medical School, USA
  • Fumito Masui, Kitami Institute of Technology, Japan
  • Yashar Mehdad, Airbnb, USA
  • Rada Mihalcea, University of Michigan, USA
  • Mainack Mondal, Max Planck Institute for Software Systems, Germany
  • Manuel Montes-y-Gómez, INAOE, Mexico
  • Kevin Munger, NYU, USA
  • Preslav Nakov, Qatar Computing Research Institute, HBKU, Qatar
  • Courtney Napoles, Johns Hopkins University, USA
  • Chikashi Nobata, Apple, USA
  • Guy De Pauw, CLiPS - University of Antwerp, Belgium
  • Whitney Phillips, Mercer University, USA
  • Karolien Poels, University of Antwerp, Belgium
  • Martin Potthast, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, Germany
  • Daniel Preotiuc-Pietro, University of Pennsylvania, USA
  • Michal Ptaszynski, Kitami Institute of Technology, Japan
  • Awais Rashid, Lancaster University, United Kingdom
  • Björn Ross, University Duisburg-Essen, Germany
  • Paolo Rosso, Universitat Politecnica de Valencia, Spain
  • Masoud Rouhizadeh, Stony Brook University & University of Pennsylvania, USA
  • Christina Sauper, Facebook, USA
  • Molly Sauter, McGill University, Canada
  • Nishant Shah, Leuphana, ArtEZ University of the Arts, CIS (Bangalore), India
  • Thamar Solorio, University of Houston, USA
  • Jeffrey Sorensen, Jigsaw, USA
  • Dennis Tenen, Columbia University, USA
  • Jennifer Terry, University of California, Irvine, USA
  • Achint Thomas, Embibe Indiavidual Inc, India
  • Nanna Bonde Thylstrup, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Lyle Ungar, University of Pennsylvania, USA
  • Anna Vartapetiance, University of Surrey, United Kingdom
  • Kristin Veel, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Erik Velldal, University of Oslo, Norway
  • Ingmar Weber, Qatar Computing Research Institute, Qatar
  • Jacque Wernimont, Arizona State University, USA
  • Michael Wojatzki, University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany
  • Lilia Øvrelid, University of Oslo, Norway

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