As part of a co-funded EU project, an international research group including DW experts has started a three-year "Innovation Action" to detect fake user-generated videos (UGV) and eliminate them from news reports.
The InVID initiative (In Video Veritas – Verification of Social Media Video Content for the News Industry) will create a platform providing services to identify news-relevant videos on social networks, to verify the content and to clarify usage rights.
UGV can be extremely valuable for news services, as they often provide the very first images of a dramatic event or a crisis area. However, they can irrevocably destroy the reputation of a news service if they prove to be manipulated or falsified. Within media organizations, attempts to verify UGV content consume a large amount of resources.
InVID aims to automate most of these steps to speed up and facilitate the process for professional journalists. On the future platform, topics that represent breaking news on social media will be identified. Videos being uploaded and shared about these topics on social networks will then be found, indexed, temporally fragmented and annotated based on their content. Based on the annotations and metadata, which include information about the user, location and time of recording, it will be possible to carry out an initial ranking of the videos. The subsequent verification process will focus on videos that are likely to be relevant and reliable.
The existing verification process relies on individual human assessment rather than objectively quantifiable criteria. Those responsible for content authenticity must establish whether the time and location of the event portrayed in the video appear plausible, that the video material was not manipulated or previously published, and that the metadata are correct. They also have to find out who recorded the video, whether this person can be contacted, whether similar images of the same event are available online, and the extent to which the event is already being discussed on social media.
About InVID: InVID (In Video Veritas – Verification of Social Media Video Content for the News Industry) is an Innovation Action that has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No 687786. InVID started in January 2016 and will run until December 2018. Its goal is to build a platform providing services to detect, authenticate and check the reliability and accuracy of newsworthy video files and video content spread via social media. The project is coordinated by CERTH (Centre for Research and Technology Hellas, Greece), and the consortium's partners are MODUL Technology GmbH (Austria), Universitat de Lleida (Spain), EXO MAKINA (France), webLyzard technology GmbH (Austria), Condat AG (Germany), APA-IT Informations Technologie GmbH (Austria), Agence France Presse (France), and Deutsche Welle (Germany). For more information see www.invid-project.eu.