The last week of January 2023 will pass under the motto “United against disinformation” and will be dedicated to events organized by the Institute “Big data for smart society” – GATE at Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”. The events are part of GATE’s commitment to use technology and big data in areas where they are particularly needed and useful to society.
From January 23 to 27, 2023, the Institute will host four complementary events:
Scientists from the Disinformation Detection and Research Team at GATE will talk about their exciting work and the projects they are working on. Visitors to the Open-door will be introduced to the topic through interactive games and fun quizzes.
The two-day workshop on recognizing disinformation and false information will bring participants together with Prof. Dr. Kalina Boncheva, a world-renowned scientist in the field and head of the Natural Language Processing Group at the University of Sheffield’s Department of Computer Science. Col. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Petko Dimov – Director of the “Distance Learning, Language Training and Qualification” Department of the “Georgi Sava Rakovski” Military Academy will present a guide to combating fake news in Bulgarian. Hristina Shushkov, specialist in criminal linguistics, will reveal specialized techniques for recognizing false information. Lawyer Eleonora Mateyna will explain how the spreaders of false information are exposed in Bulgaria and the EU. The seminar will mark the successful completion of the GATE TRACES project, which detects traces of disinformation in Bulgarian social media.
At the end of the “United Against Disinformation” week, the kick-off meeting of the new project coordinated by GATE to create a Bulgarian-Romanian Observatory for Digital Media (BROD) will take place. The project involves 12 partners from five European countries, including Agence France-Presse and Bulgarian National Television, and will last until May 31, 2025. The project aims to create a multinational, multilateral and multidisciplinary regional hub for detecting, analyzing and combating disinformation spread in Bulgaria and Romania. BROD will offer world-leading expertise, locally adapted multilingual tools and capabilities for rapid detection and analysis of disinformation campaigns and will contribute to the work of the European Digital Media Observatory (EDMO).
In 2018, the European Commission introduced the Code of practice on disinformation, aimed at greater cooperation on solutions to the problem of disinformation and the involvement of technology companies at the heart of digital media. Twenty-one companies, including Google, Facebook and Twitter, have committed to the Code. The round table on January 26 (4:30 PM – 6:00 PM) invites stakeholders from the technology, media and academic sectors, NGOs and all interested citizens to join the discussion of the Code and the specific opportunities and challenges in Bulgaria and Romania.