A Multimodal Approach for Identifying Conspiracy Theories in Social Media (MAICT)

Type: National Project Project

Duration: from 2022 Jan 01 to 2023 Jun 30

Financed by: FCT

Prime Contractor: INESC-ID (Other)

The project’s main goal is to systematically investigate and formalize the main linguistic, discursive and semiotic properties underlying conspiracy theories that are produced
resorting to different modes - hence, multimodal. It envisages the creation of innovative language resources that can be used to assist automatic detection and classification of the
sociolects used to produce conspiracy theories that are prevalent in social media nowadays. In particular, the project aims at answering, among others, the following research
1. Which are the most predominant morphosyntactic, lexico-syntactic, semantic and discursive features in conspiracy theory narratives that abound in social media, and how do they
relate to each other?
2. Which meanings can be inferred from images that include conspiracy narratives, from a social semiotics point of view?
3. How do text and image articulate in multimodal conspiracy narratives to create either a unified or a dissociated meaning?
4. Which are the most suitable approaches to describe and formalize the multimodal properties from text and image, and respective interaction, in view of their automatic
5. How can Portuguese conspiracy sociolects be characterized from a multimodal point of view?


  • Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto (University)
  • INESC-ID (Other)
  • Universidade do Minho (University) - Braga, Portugal

Principal Investigators