Tell Me Who Your Friends Are: Using Content Sharing Behavior for News Source Veracity Detection

01/15/2021 ∙ by Mauricio Gruppi, et al. ∙ 0

Stopping the malicious spread and production of false and misleading news has become a top priority for researchers. Due to this prevalence, many automated methods for detecting low quality information have been introduced. The majority of these methods have used article-level features, such as their writing style, to detect veracity. While writing style models have been shown to work well in lab-settings, there are concerns of generalizability and robustness. In this paper, we begin to address these concerns by proposing a novel and robust news veracity detection model that uses the content sharing behavior of news sources formulated as a network. We represent these content sharing networks (CSN) using a deep walk based method for embedding graphs that accounts for similarity in both the network space and the article text space. We show that state of the art writing style and CSN features make diverse mistakes when predicting, meaning that they both play different roles in the classification task. Moreover, we show that the addition of CSN features increases the accuracy of writing style models, boosting accuracy as much as 14% when using Random Forests. Similarly, we show that the combination of hand-crafted article-level features and CSN features is robust to concept drift, performing consistently well over a 10-month time frame.

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