The last few years have witnessed great success on image generation, which has crossed the acceptance thresholds of aesthetics, making it directly applicable to personal and commercial applications. However, images, especially in marketing and advertising applications, are often created as a means to an end as opposed to just aesthetic concerns. The goal can be increasing sales, getting more clicks, likes, or image sales (in the case of stock businesses). Therefore, the generated images need to perform well on these key performance indicators (KPIs), in addition to being aesthetically good. In this paper, we make the first endeavor to answer the question of "How can one infuse the knowledge of the end-goal within the image generation process itself to create not just better-looking images but also "better-performing'' images?''. We propose BoigLLM, an LLM that understands both image content and user behavior. BoigLLM knows how an image should look to get a certain required KPI. We show that BoigLLM outperforms 13x larger models such as GPT-3.5 and GPT-4 in this task, demonstrating that while these state-of-the-art models can understand images, they lack information on how these images perform in the real world. To generate actual pixels of behavior-conditioned images, we train a diffusion-based model (BoigSD) to align with a proposed BoigLLM-defined reward. We show the performance of the overall pipeline on two datasets covering two different behaviors: a stock dataset with the number of forward actions as the KPI and a dataset containing tweets with the total likes as the KPI, denoted as BoigBench. To advance research in the direction of utility-driven image generation and understanding, we release BoigBench, a benchmark dataset containing 168 million enterprise tweets with their media, brand account names, time of post, and total likes.
Fairness in Language Models (LMs) remains a longstanding challenge, given the inherent biases in training data that can be perpetuated by models and affect the downstream tasks. Recent methods employ expensive retraining or attempt debiasing during inference by constraining model outputs to contrast from a reference set of biased templates or exemplars. Regardless, they dont address the primary goal of fairness to maintain equitability across different demographic groups. In this work, we posit that inferencing LMs to generate unbiased output for one demographic under a context ensues from being aware of outputs for other demographics under the same context. To this end, we propose Counterfactually Aware Fair InferencE (CAFIE), a framework that dynamically compares the model understanding of diverse demographics to generate more equitable sentences. We conduct an extensive empirical evaluation using base LMs of varying sizes and across three diverse datasets and found that CAFIE outperforms strong baselines. CAFIE produces fairer text and strikes the best balance between fairness and language modeling capability
Shannon, in his seminal paper introducing information theory, divided the communication into three levels: technical, semantic, and effectivenss. While the technical level is concerned with accurate reconstruction of transmitted symbols, the semantic and effectiveness levels deal with the inferred meaning and its effect on the receiver. Thanks to telecommunications, the first level problem has produced great advances like the internet. Large Language Models (LLMs) make some progress towards the second goal, but the third level still remains largely untouched. The third problem deals with predicting and optimizing communication for desired receiver behavior. LLMs, while showing wide generalization capabilities across a wide range of tasks, are unable to solve for this. One reason for the underperformance could be a lack of "behavior tokens" in LLMs' training corpora. Behavior tokens define receiver behavior over a communication, such as shares, likes, clicks, purchases, retweets, etc. While preprocessing data for LLM training, behavior tokens are often removed from the corpora as noise. Therefore, in this paper, we make some initial progress towards reintroducing behavior tokens in LLM training. The trained models, other than showing similar performance to LLMs on content understanding tasks, show generalization capabilities on behavior simulation, content simulation, behavior understanding, and behavior domain adaptation. Using a wide range of tasks on two corpora, we show results on all these capabilities. We call these models Large Content and Behavior Models (LCBMs). Further, to spur more research on LCBMs, we release our new Content Behavior Corpus (CBC), a repository containing communicator, message, and corresponding receiver behavior.
Marketers spend billions of dollars on advertisements but to what end? At the purchase time, if customers cannot recognize a brand for which they saw an ad, the money spent on the ad is essentially wasted. Despite its importance in marketing, until now, there has been no study on the memorability of ads in the ML literature. Most studies have been conducted on short-term recall (<5 mins) on specific content types like object and action videos. On the other hand, the advertising industry only cares about long-term memorability (a few hours or longer), and advertisements are almost always highly multimodal, depicting a story through its different modalities (text, images, and videos). With this motivation, we conduct the first large scale memorability study consisting of 1203 participants and 2205 ads covering 276 brands. Running statistical tests over different participant subpopulations and ad-types, we find many interesting insights into what makes an ad memorable - both content and human factors. For example, we find that brands which use commercials with fast moving scenes are more memorable than those with slower scenes (p=8e-10) and that people who use ad-blockers remember lower number of ads than those who don't (p=5e-3). Further, with the motivation of simulating the memorability of marketing materials for a particular audience, ultimately helping create one, we present a novel model, Sharingan, trained to leverage real-world knowledge of LLMs and visual knowledge of visual encoders to predict the memorability of a content. We test our model on all the prominent memorability datasets in literature (both images and videos) and achieve state of the art across all of them. We conduct extensive ablation studies across memory types, modality, brand, and architectural choices to find insights into what drives memory.
Learning object segmentation in image and video datasets without human supervision is a challenging problem. Humans easily identify moving salient objects in videos using the gestalt principle of common fate, which suggests that what moves together belongs together. Building upon this idea, we propose a self-supervised object discovery approach that leverages motion and appearance information to produce high-quality object segmentation masks. Specifically, we redesign the traditional graph cut on images to include motion information in a linear combination with appearance information to produce edge weights. Remarkably, this step produces object segmentation masks comparable to the current state-of-the-art on multiple benchmarks. To further improve performance, we bootstrap a segmentation network trained on these preliminary masks as pseudo-ground truths to learn from its own outputs via self-training. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach, named LOCATE, on multiple standard video object segmentation, image saliency detection, and object segmentation benchmarks, achieving results on par with and, in many cases surpassing state-of-the-art methods. We also demonstrate the transferability of our approach to novel domains through a qualitative study on in-the-wild images. Additionally, we present extensive ablation analysis to support our design choices and highlight the contribution of each component of our proposed method.
Segmentation of objects in a video is challenging due to the nuances such as motion blurring, parallax, occlusions, changes in illumination, etc. Instead of addressing these nuances separately, we focus on building a generalizable solution that avoids overfitting to the individual intricacies. Such a solution would also help us save enormous resources involved in human annotation of video corpora. To solve Video Object Segmentation (VOS) in an unsupervised setting, we propose a new pipeline (FODVid) based on the idea of guiding segmentation outputs using flow-guided graph-cut and temporal consistency. Basically, we design a segmentation model incorporating intra-frame appearance and flow similarities, and inter-frame temporal continuation of the objects under consideration. We perform an extensive experimental analysis of our straightforward methodology on the standard DAVIS16 video benchmark. Though simple, our approach produces results comparable (within a range of ~2 mIoU) to the existing top approaches in unsupervised VOS. The simplicity and effectiveness of our technique opens up new avenues for research in the video domain.
The two-time scale nature of SAC, which is an actor-critic algorithm, is characterised by the fact that the critic estimate has not converged for the actor at any given time, but since the critic learns faster than the actor, it ensures eventual consistency between the two. Various strategies have been introduced in literature to learn better gradient estimates to help achieve better convergence. Since gradient estimates depend upon the critic, we posit that improving the critic can provide a better gradient estimate for the actor at each time. Utilizing this, we propose Soft Actor Retrospective Critic (SARC), where we augment the SAC critic loss with another loss term - retrospective loss - leading to faster critic convergence and consequently, better policy gradient estimates for the actor. An existing implementation of SAC can be easily adapted to SARC with minimal modifications. Through extensive experimentation and analysis, we show that SARC provides consistent improvement over SAC on benchmark environments. We plan to open-source the code and all experiment data at: https://github.com/sukritiverma1996/SARC.
Multimedia content, such as advertisements and story videos, exhibit a rich blend of creativity and multiple modalities. They incorporate elements like text, visuals, audio, and storytelling techniques, employing devices like emotions, symbolism, and slogans to convey meaning. While previous research in multimedia understanding has focused mainly on videos with specific actions like cooking, there is a dearth of large annotated training datasets, hindering the development of supervised learning models with satisfactory performance for real-world applications. However, the rise of large language models (LLMs) has witnessed remarkable zero-shot performance in various natural language processing (NLP) tasks, such as emotion classification, question-answering, and topic classification. To bridge this performance gap in multimedia understanding, we propose verbalizing story videos to generate their descriptions in natural language and then performing video-understanding tasks on the generated story as opposed to the original video. Through extensive experiments on five video-understanding tasks, we demonstrate that our method, despite being zero-shot, achieves significantly better results than supervised baselines for video understanding. Further, alleviating a lack of story understanding benchmarks, we publicly release the first dataset on a crucial task in computational social science, persuasion strategy identification.
Hierarchical Topic Models (HTMs) are useful for discovering topic hierarchies in a collection of documents. However, traditional HTMs often produce hierarchies where lowerlevel topics are unrelated and not specific enough to their higher-level topics. Additionally, these methods can be computationally expensive. We present HyHTM - a Hyperbolic geometry based Hierarchical Topic Models - that addresses these limitations by incorporating hierarchical information from hyperbolic geometry to explicitly model hierarchies in topic models. Experimental results with four baselines show that HyHTM can better attend to parent-child relationships among topics. HyHTM produces coherent topic hierarchies that specialise in granularity from generic higher-level topics to specific lowerlevel topics. Further, our model is significantly faster and leaves a much smaller memory footprint than our best-performing baseline.We have made the source code for our algorithm publicly accessible.