Spoiler warning! This neural network spots dangerous reviews before you read them

TechCrunch | 7/9/2019 | Staff
Tanya9 (Posted by) Level 3
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It’s hard to avoid spoilers on the internet these days — even if you’re careful, a random tweet or recommended news item could lay to waste your plan to watch that season finale a day late or catch a movie after the crowds have subsided. But soon an AI agent may do the spoiler-spotting for you, and flag spoilerific reviews and content before you even have a chance to look.

SpoilerNet is the creation of a team at UC San Diego, composed perhaps of people who tried waiting a week to see Infinity War and got snapped for their troubles. Never again!

Database - Reviews - Community - Goodreads - Convention

They assembled a database of more than a million reviews from Amazon-owned reading community Goodreads, where it is the convention to note spoilers in any reviews, essentially line by line. As a user of the site I’m thankful for this capability, and the researchers were too — because nowhere else is there a corpus of written reviews in which whatever constitutes a “spoiler” has been meticulously labeled by a conscientious community.

At any rate, such labeled data is these days basically food for what are generally referred to as AI systems: neural networks of various types that “learn” the qualities that define a specific image, object, or in this case spoilers. The team fed the 1.3 million Goodreads reviews into the system, letting it observe and record the differences between ordinary sentences and ones with spoilers in them.

Writers - Reviews - Sentences - Plot - Details

Perhaps writers of reviews tend to begin sentences with plot details in a certain way — “Later it is revealed…” — or maybe spoilery sentences tend to lack evaluative words like “great” or “complex.” Who knows? Only the network.

Once its training was complete, the agent was set loose on a separate set of sentences (from both Goodreads and mind-boggling timesink TV Tropes), which it...
(Excerpt) Read more at: TechCrunch
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