Gender-spotting software could stop fake bloggers  11 years ago

Gender-spotting software could stop fake bloggers

Software guessing the gender of anonymous authors could be used to stop future ‘fake bloggers’.

The now world-renowned blog ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ blog, which profiled the struggles of, you guessed it, a gay girl in Damascus was actually written by a 40 year old American man living in Edinburgh. Tom MacMaster admitted to writing the blog all along.

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In fairness, we don’t need another 40 year old blogging about his love for cars and golf or what have you.

This new software developed by Na Cheng and colleagues at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken (pronounced HOBO-ken), New Jersey could soon be used to discover if an author is male or female. The software allows users to upload a file or paste text for gender analysis and works by searching for specific words and punctuation styles associated with men and women.

The developers say they have found 157 gender specific factors, which the software looks for when searching text. Included in these factors are: words that indicate the mood or sentiment of the author, which indicate a female author, the use of the word I, which indicates a male author, and the use of question marks.

An over indulgence in question marks indicates a female author. Really? Is that true? Does that mean women ask a lot of questions? Who knows? I'm a bloke, by the way.

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The group behind the software say it could possibly be used to help stop young girls being groomed by older men who are hiding their gender.

The software is not 100% accurate yet, but it does claim to be 85% accurate. This will improve as more people use the software according to the group. Another weapon for the anti-paedo arsenal. Lock and load.