SATAR: A Self-supervised Approach to Twitter Account Representation Learning and its Application in Bot Detection [article]

Shangbin Feng, Herun Wan, Ningnan Wang, Jundong Li, Minnan Luo
2021 arXiv   pre-print
Twitter has become a major social media platform since its launching in 2006, while complaints about bot accounts have increased recently. Although extensive research efforts have been made, the state-of-the-art bot detection methods fall short of generalizability and adaptability. Specifically, previous bot detectors leverage only a small fraction of user information and are often trained on datasets that only cover few types of bots. As a result, they fail to generalize to real-world
more » ... on the Twittersphere where different types of bots co-exist. Additionally, bots in Twitter are constantly evolving to evade detection. Previous efforts, although effective once in their context, fail to adapt to new generations of Twitter bots. To address the two challenges of Twitter bot detection, we propose SATAR, a self-supervised representation learning framework of Twitter users, and apply it to the task of bot detection. In particular, SATAR generalizes by jointly leveraging the semantics, property and neighborhood information of a specific user. Meanwhile, SATAR adapts by pre-training on a massive number of self-supervised users and fine-tuning on detailed bot detection scenarios. Extensive experiments demonstrate that SATAR outperforms competitive baselines on different bot detection datasets of varying information completeness and collection time. SATAR is also proved to generalize in real-world scenarios and adapt to evolving generations of social media bots.
arXiv:2106.13089v2 fatcat:lybltfco6zfwlhednpb5upqn3u