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EdinburghNLP at WNUT-2020 Task 2: Leveraging Transformers with Generalized Augmentation for Identifying Informativeness in COVID-19 Tweets

by   Nickil Maveli, et al.

Twitter has become an important communication channel in times of emergency. The ubiquitousness of smartphones enables people to announce an emergency they're observing in real-time. Because of this, more agencies are interested in programatically monitoring Twitter (disaster relief organizations and news agencies) and therefore recognizing the informativeness of a tweet can help filter noise from large volumes of data. In this paper, we present our submission for WNUT-2020 Task 2: Identification of informative COVID-19 English Tweets. Our most successful model is an ensemble of transformers including RoBERTa, XLNet, and BERTweet trained in a semi-supervised experimental setting. The proposed system achieves a F1 score of 0.9011 on the test set (ranking 7th on the leaderboard), and shows significant gains in performance compared to a baseline system using fasttext embeddings.


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