Annotating speaker stance in discourse: the Brexit Blog Corpus (BBC)
SND-ID: snd1037-1. Version: 1.0. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5878/002925
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Linnaeus University - Department of Computer Science
In this study, we explore to what extent language users agree about what kind of stances are expressed in natural language use or whether their interpretations diverge. In order to perform this task, a comprehensive cognitive-functional framework of ten stance categories was developed based on previous work on speaker stance in the literature. A corpus of opinionated texts, where speakers take stance and position themselves, was compiled, the Brexit Blog Corpus (BBC). An analytical interface for the annotations was set up and the data were annotated independently by two annotators. The annotation procedure, the annotation agreement and the co-occurrence of more than one stance category in the utterances are described and discussed. The careful, analytical annotation process has by and large returned satisfactory inter- and intra-annotation agreement scores, resulting in a gold standard corpus, the final version of the BBC.
The aim of this study is to explore the possibility of identifying speaker stance in discourse, provide an analytical resource for it and an evaluation of the lev
The aim of this study is to explore the possibility of identifying speaker stance in discourse, provide an analytical resource for it and an evaluation of the level of agreement across speakers in the area of stance-taking in discourse.
The BBC is a collection of texts from blog sources. The corpus texts are thematically related to the 2016 UK referendum concerning whether the UK should remain members of the European Union or not. The texts were extracted from the Internet from June to August 2015. With the Gavagai API (https://developer.gavagai.se), the texts were detected using seed words, such as Brexit, EU referendum, pro-Europe, europhiles, eurosceptics, United States of Europe, David Cameron, or Downing Street. The retrieved URLs were filtered so that only entries described as blogs in English were selected. Each downloaded document was split into sentential utterances, from which 2,200 utterances were randomly selected as the analysis data set. The final size of the corpus is 1,682 utterances, 35,492 words (169,762 characters without spaces). Each utterance contains from 3 to 40 words with a mean length of 21 words.
For the data annotation process the Active Learning and Visual Analytics (ALVA) system (https://doi.org/10.1145/3132169 and https://doi.org/10.2312/eurp.20161139) was used. Two annotators, one who is a professional translator with a Licentiate degree in English Linguistics and the other one with a PhD in Computational Linguistics, carried out the annotations independently of one another.
The data set can be downloaded in two different formats: a standard Microsoft Excel format and a raw data format (ZIP archive) which can be useful for analytical and machine learning purposes, for example, with the Python library scikit-learn. The Excel file includes one additional variable (utterance word length). The ZIP archive contains a set of directories (e.g., "contrariety" and "prediction") corresponding to the stance categories. Inside of each such directory, there are two nested directories corresponding to annotations which assign or not assign the respective category to utterances (e.g., inside the top-level category "prediction" there are two directories, "prediction" with utterances which were labeled with this category, and "no" with the rest of the utterances). Inside of the nested directories, there are textual files containing individual utterances.
When using data from this study, the primary researcher wishes citation also to be made to the publication: Vasiliki Simaki, Carita Paradis, Maria Skeppstedt, Magnus Sahlgren, Kostiantyn Kucher, and Andreas Kerren. Annotating speaker stance in discourse: the Brexit Blog Corpus. In Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory, 2017. De Gruyter, published electronically before print. https://doi.org/10.1515/cllt-2016-0060 Show less..
- Time period(s) for data collection: 2015-06-01 – 2016-05-31
- Source of the data: Research data
Department of Computer Science
- Funding agency: Swedish Research Council
- Funding agency's reference number: 2012-5659
Information technology (CESSDA Topic Classification)
Language technology (computational linguistics) (Standard för svensk indelning av forskningsämnen 2011)
General language studies and linguistics (Standard för svensk indelning av forskningsämnen 2011)
Specific languages (Standard för svensk indelning av forskningsämnen 2011)
Language and linguistics (CESSDA Topic Classification)
Media, communication and language (CESSDA Topic Classification)
Vasiliki Simaki, Carita Paradis, Maria Skeppstedt, Magnus Sahlgren, Kostiantyn Kucher, and Andreas Kerren. Annotating speaker stance in discourse: the Brexit Blog Corpus. In Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory, 2017. De Gruyter, published electronically before print. https://doi.org/10.1515/cllt-2016-0060
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