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MultiOpEd: A Corpus of Multi-Perspective News Editorials

06/04/2021
by   Siyi Liu, et al.
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We propose MultiOpEd, an open-domain news editorial corpus that supports various tasks pertaining to the argumentation structure in news editorials, focusing on automatic perspective discovery. News editorial is a genre of persuasive text, where the argumentation structure is usually implicit. However, the arguments presented in an editorial typically center around a concise, focused thesis, which we refer to as their perspective. MultiOpEd aims at supporting the study of multiple tasks relevant to automatic perspective discovery, where a system is expected to produce a single-sentence thesis statement summarizing the arguments presented. We argue that identifying and abstracting such natural language perspectives from editorials is a crucial step toward studying the implicit argumentation structure in news editorials. We first discuss the challenges and define a few conceptual tasks towards our goal. To demonstrate the utility of MultiOpEd and the induced tasks, we study the problem of perspective summarization in a multi-task learning setting, as a case study. We show that, with the induced tasks as auxiliary tasks, we can improve the quality of the perspective summary generated. We hope that MultiOpEd will be a useful resource for future studies on argumentation in the news editorial domain.

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