Covid-Transformer: Detecting COVID-19 Trending Topics on Twitter Using Universal Sentence Encoder

by   Meysam Asgari-Chenaghlu, et al.

The novel corona-virus disease (also known as COVID-19) has led to a pandemic, impacting more than 200 countries across the globe. With its global impact, COVID-19 has become a major concern of people almost everywhere, and therefore there are a large number of tweets coming out from every corner of the world, about COVID-19 related topics. In this work, we try to analyze the tweets and detect the trending topics and major concerns of people on Twitter, which can enable us to better understand the situation, and devise better planning. More specifically we propose a model based on the universal sentence encoder to detect the main topics of Tweets in recent months. We used universal sentence encoder in order to derive the semantic representation and the similarity of tweets. We then used the sentence similarity and their embeddings, and feed them to K-means clustering algorithm to group similar tweets (in semantic sense). After that, the cluster summary is obtained using a text summarization algorithm based on deep learning, which can uncover the underlying topics of each cluster. Through experimental results, we show that our model can detect very informative topics, by processing a large number of tweets on sentence level (which can preserve the overall meaning of the tweets). Since this framework has no restriction on specific data distribution, it can be used to detect trending topics from any other social media and any other context rather than COVID-19. Experimental results show superiority of our proposed approach to other baselines, including TF-IDF, and latent Dirichlet allocation (LDA).


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