“Judge me by my size (noun), do you?” YodaLib: A Demographic-Aware Humor Generation Framework

The 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING 2020)

Publication date: December 8, 2020

Aparna Garimella, Carmen Banea, Nabil Hossain, Rada Mihalcea

The subjective nature of humor makes computerized humor generation a challenging task. We propose an automatic humor generation framework for filling the blanks in Mad Libs stories, while accounting for the demographic backgrounds of the desired audience. We collect a dataset consisting of such stories, which are filled in and judged by carefully selected workers on Amazon Mechanical Turk. We build upon the BERT platform to predict location-biased word fillings in incomplete sentences, and we fine-tune BERT to classify location-specific humor in a sentence. We leverage these components to produce YODALIB, a fully-automated Mad Libs style humor generation framework, which selects and ranks appropriate candidate words and sentences in order to generate a coherent and funny story tailored to certain demographics. Our experimental results indicate that YODALIB outperforms a previous semi-automated approach proposed for this task, while also surpassing human annotators in both qualitative and quantitative analyses.

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