OSN Mining Platform – Building a public dataset for fake news research (available)

Starting Date: June 2018
Duration: 8-10 Weeks
Time commitment: Full Time
Prerequisites: Computer Science Undergraduate Student, Enthusiasm and desire to be a problem solver.

Project Description

According to the Statista, in 2018 the UK had 44 million (66% of the population) active Online Social Networks (OSN) users. Whereas, globally, active OSN user population is 3,397 million. The most popular reason for using the OSN is to stay in touch with friends and family (42% of respondents) and stay up to date with current news and events (41% of respondents). It is clearly evident that OSNs are becoming a trusted source of communication and information outlet. The fact exploited by fake news generators, spammers and clickbait activities, to name a few. The massive spread of digital misinformation on OSNs has been identified as a significant threat to democracies and social cohesion. The year 2019 and 2020 is going to see the most significant number of elections around the world. For this reason, we want to build a platform that can collect the OSN activities related to these election campaigns to create an open data platform for research to explore/evaluate their bot detection proposals.

The UROP receipt will work on the design, developing and deployment of OSN activities collection and storage. The respective UROP recipient will be pivotal in shaping the scope of this project and lead the research activities in collaboration with the ISG-SCC team.

Required Technical Skills

ISG-SCC value the enthusiasm and commitment significantly and considers technical skills as an acquirable skill during the internship. However, fundamental understanding and knowledge of OSN, data mining, cloud computing and database design will be desirable.

What will you gain during UROP?

During this internship, the objective of the ISG-SCC is to make sure that you develop your independent research and development skills and enhance your skills on a) presenting the project’s progress, b) keeping in line with time management, b) research methods, c) technical writing skills for project outcomes and d) problem identification and solving.

ISG-SCC Track Record

ISG-SCC has successfully run the UROP for the last two years. The success of the previous two years has produced a patent application (under review by patent office) and commercial demo (MVP) under development, and five research papers. Corresponding undergraduate students are named as first authors on the papers and co-inventor on the patent application. Research papers by undergraduate students have won one ‘best student paper award’, featured in a news article on Medium and being pivotal for a World Economic Forum’s project for anti-corruption project. The ethos of ISG-SCC is that undergraduate students have the talent and imagination to sort out unique and innovative solutions. They just need guidance from established researchers, and this is what ISG-SCC will provide during the UROP.