Google-backed research fights review spam
University of Illinois at Chicago researchers are taking aim at fake reviews, which they say can seriously damage online businesses.
In particular, the Google-backed study is designed to seek out organized groups of comment fraudsters, and automate the process of identifying and shutting them down.
Fake reviewers can have devastating affects on a variety of Internet-dependent businesses, but with the emergence of user-reviewed social-style operations like Yelp and TripAdvisor, both positive (to promote a business) and negative (to damage a competitor) frauds are becoming endemic.
For the affected business, the researchers say, weeding out the fakes is expensive: while it's not hard for a human to identify a fraud, the process is labour-intensive.
In their paper (pdf), authored by the university's Bing Liu and Arjun Mukherjee, along with Google's Natalie Glance, the researchers present an algorithm called GSRank which they hope can be deployed against review fraud.
Continued : http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/04/17/seeing_through_sockpuppets/