Featured in The Current: Modeling Misinformation

July 29, 2019

This article was originally published by Sonia Fernandez & Shelly Leachman with The Current. 

July 29, 2019


Modeling Misinformation
Context is king for UC Santa Barbara computer scientist William Wang’s deep learning project, which aims to understand the spread of online misinformation

View the complete news release at: https://www.news.ucsb.edu/2019/019565/modeling-misinformation

(Santa Barbara, Calif.) — We live in an era of too much information — an endless stream of status updates, memes, reposts, infographics, quotes and hashtags roll daily through our social media feeds, meant to express viewpoints, drum up solidarity, provide information, change minds or cause controversy.

Problem is, the average online browser/social media user doesn’t have the time or wherewithal to investigate the legitimacy or provenance of everything that shows up on their feeds. And it is this vulnerability that less scrupulous content generators exploit to spread misinformation, with results that can range from a little egg-on-face embarrassment to downright life-changing or potentially deadly consequences.

For UC Santa Barbara computer scientist William Wang, this chaotic morass is fertile grounds for exploration. Wang believes that deep learning techniques, when deployed on the text and hyperlink network of online posts and news articles, can help us with some of the critical thinking heavy lifting. This concept lies at the heart of his three-year project “Dynamo: Dynamic Multichannel Modeling of Misinformation.”

CONTACT:
Sonia Fernandez
(805) 893-4765
sonia.fernandez@ucsb.edu
Shelly Leachman
(805) 893-8726
shelly.leachman@ucsb.edu

 

This article was originally published by Sonia Fernandez & Shelly Leachman with The Current.