Daniela Trotta


Work Hard, Play Hard: Collecting Acceptability Annotations through a 3D Game
Federico Bonetti | Elisa Leonardelli | Daniela Trotta | Raffaele Guarasci | Sara Tonelli
Proceedings of the Thirteenth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

Corpus-based studies on acceptability judgements have always stimulated the interest of researchers, both in theoretical and computational fields. Some approaches focused on spontaneous judgements collected through different types of tasks, others on data annotated through crowd-sourcing platforms, still others relied on expert annotated data available from the literature. The release of CoLA corpus, a large-scale corpus of sentences extracted from linguistic handbooks as examples of acceptable/non acceptable phenomena in English, has revived interest in the reliability of judgements of linguistic experts vs. non-experts. Several issues are still open. In this work, we contribute to this debate by presenting a 3D video game that was used to collect acceptability judgments on Italian sentences. We analyse the resulting annotations in terms of agreement among players and by comparing them with experts’ acceptability judgments. We also discuss different game settings to assess their impact on participants’ motivation and engagement. The final dataset containing 1,062 sentences, which were selected based on majority voting, is released for future research and comparisons.


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Are Gestures Worth a Thousand Words? An Analysis of Interviews in the Political Domain
Daniela Trotta | Sara Tonelli
Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Multimodal Semantic Representations (MMSR)

Speaker gestures are semantically co-expressive with speech and serve different pragmatic functions to accompany oral modality. Therefore, gestures are an inseparable part of the language system: they may add clarity to discourse, can be employed to facilitate lexical retrieval and retain a turn in conversations, assist in verbalizing semantic content and facilitate speakers in coming up with the words they intend to say. This aspect is particularly relevant in political discourse, where speakers try to apply communication strategies that are both clear and persuasive using verbal and non-verbal cues. In this paper we investigate the co-speech gestures of several Italian politicians during face-to-face interviews using a multimodal linguistic approach. We first enrich an existing corpus with a novel annotation layer capturing the function of hand movements. Then, we perform an analysis of the corpus, focusing in particular on the relationship between hand movements and other information layers such as the political party or non-lexical and semi-lexical tags. We observe that the recorded differences pertain more to single politicians than to the party they belong to, and that hand movements tend to occur frequently with semi-lexical phenomena, supporting the lexical retrieval hypothesis.

Monolingual and Cross-Lingual Acceptability Judgments with the Italian CoLA corpus
Daniela Trotta | Raffaele Guarasci | Elisa Leonardelli | Sara Tonelli
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

The development of automated approaches to linguistic acceptability has been greatly fostered by the availability of the English CoLA corpus, which has also been included in the widely used GLUE benchmark. However, this kind of research for languages other than English, as well as the analysis of cross-lingual approaches, has been hindered by the lack of resources with a comparable size in other languages. We have therefore developed the ItaCoLA corpus, containing almost 10,000 sentences with acceptability judgments, which has been created following the same approach and the same steps as the English one. In this paper we describe the corpus creation, we detail its content, and we present the first experiments on this new resource. We compare in-domain and out-of-domain classification, and perform a specific evaluation of nine linguistic phenomena. We also present the first cross-lingual experiments, aimed at assessing whether multilingual transformer-based approaches can benefit from using sentences in two languages during fine-tuning.


Adding Gesture, Posture and Facial Displays to the PoliModal Corpus of Political Interviews
Daniela Trotta | Alessio Palmero Aprosio | Sara Tonelli | Annibale Elia
Proceedings of the Twelfth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

This paper introduces a multimodal corpus in the political domain, which on top of transcribed face-to-face interviews presents the annotation of facial displays, hand gestures and body posture. While the fully annotated corpus consists of 3 interviews for a total of 90 minutes, it is extracted from a larger available corpus of 56 face-to-face interviews (14 hours) that has been manually annotated with information about metadata (i.e. tools used for the transcription, link to the interview etc.), pauses (used to mark a pause either between or within utterances), vocal expressions (marking non-lexical expressions such as burp and semi-lexical expressions such as primary interjections), deletions (false starts, repetitions and truncated words) and overlaps. In this work, we describe the additional level of annotation relating to nonverbal elements used by three Italian politicians belonging to three different political parties and who at the time of the talk-show were all candidates for the presidency of the Council of Minister. We also present the results of some analyses aimed at identifying existing relations between the proxemics phenomena and the linguistic structures in which they occur in order to capture recurring patterns and differences in the communication strategy.