Inferring Crowd-Sourced Venues for Tweets


Knowing the geo-located venue of a tweet can facilitate better understanding of a user’s geographic context, allowing apps to more precisely present information, recommend services, and target advertisements. However, due to privacy concerns, few users choose to enable geotagging of their tweets resulting in a small percentage of tweets being geotagged; furthermore, even if the geo-coordinates are available, the closest venue to the geo-location may be incorrect.

In this paper, we present a method for providing a ranked list of geo-located venues for a non-geotagged tweet, which simultaneously indicates the venue name and the geo-location at a very fine-grained granularity. In our proposed method for Venue Inference for Tweets ({\VIT}), we construct a heterogeneous social network in order to analyze the embedded social relations, and leverage available but limited geographic data to estimate the geo-located venue of tweets. A single classifier is trained to predict the probability of a tweet and a geo-located venue being linked, rather than training a separate model for each venue. We examine the performance of four types of social relation features and three types of geographic features embedded in a social network when predicting whether a tweet and a venue are linked, with a best accuracy of over 88%. We use the classifier probability estimates to rank the predicted geo-located venues of a non-geotagged tweet from over 19k possibilities, and observed an average top-5 accuracy of 29%.