Google Research

COSMOS: Catching out-of-Context Misinformation with Self-Supervised Learning (2021)


Despite the recent attention to DeepFakes, one of the most prevalent ways to mislead audiences on social media is the use of unaltered images in a new but false context. To address these challenges and support fact-checkers, we propose a new method that automatically detects out-of-context image and text pairs. Our key insight is to leverage the grounding of image with text to distinguish out-of-context scenarios that cannot be disambiguated with language alone. We propose a self-supervised training strategy where we only need a set of captioned images. At train time, our method learns to selectively align individual objects in an image with textual claims, without explicit supervision. At test time, we check if both captions correspond to the same object(s) in the image but are semantically different, which allows us to make fairly accurate out-of-context predictions. Our method achieves 85% out-of-context detection accuracy. To facilitate benchmarking of this task, we create a large-scale dataset of 200K images with 450K textual captions from a variety of news websites, blogs, and social media posts. The dataset and source code is publicly available at this https URL.

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