Annotating speaker stance in discourse: the Brexit Blog Corpus (BBC)

SND-ID: SND 1037

Creator/Principal investigator(s)

Andreas Kerren - Linnaeus University orcid

Carita Paradis - Lund University, Center for Language and Literature orcid


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

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Research principal, contributors, and funding

Research principal

Linnaeus University

Responsible department/unit

Department of Computer Science


  • Funding agency: Swedish Research Council
  • Funding agency's reference number: 2012-5659
Protection and ethical review
Method and time period

Unit of analysis

Time period(s) investigated

2015-06-01 – 2016-05-31

Geographic coverage
Topic and keywords

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.

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Brexit Blog Corpus (BBC)


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 (, 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 retrie

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Version 1.0


Andreas Kerren, Carita Paradis. Linnaeus University (2017). Brexit Blog Corpus (BBC). Swedish National Data Service. Version 1.0.

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Data format / data structure


Creator/Principal investigator(s)

Andreas Kerren - Linnaeus University orcid

Carita Paradis - Lund University, Center for Language and Literature orcid

Data collection

  • Time period(s) for data collection: 2015-06-01–2016-05-31
  • Source of the data: Research data



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Published: 2017-10-16
Last updated: 2019-01-15