The Role of Previous Discourse in Identifying Public Textual Cyberbullying


  • Aurelia Power Technological University Dublin
  • Anthony Keane Technological University Dublin
  • Brian Nolan Technological University Dublin
  • Brian O'Neill Technological University Dublin



cyberbullying, discourse, grammatical structures, natural language processing


In this paper we investigate the contribution of previous discourse in identifying elements that are key to detecting public textual cyberbullying. Based on the analysis of our dataset, we first discuss the missing cyberbullying elements and the grammatical structures representative of discourse-dependent cyberbullying discourse. Then we identify four types of discourse dependent cyberbullying constructions: (1) fully inferable constructions, (2) personal marker and cyberbullying link inferable constructions, (3) dysphemistic element and cyberbullying link inferable constructions, and (4) dysphemistic element inferable constructions. Finally, we formalise a framework to resolve the missing cyberbullying elements that proposes several resolution algorithms. The resolution algorithms target the following discourse dependent message types: (1) polarity answers, (2) contradictory statements, (3) explicit ellipsis, (4) implicit affirmative answers, and (5) statements that use indefinite pronouns as placeholders for thedysphemistic element.


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