Introducing an Abusive Language Classification Framework for Telegram to Investigate the German Hater Community


  • Maximilian Wich Technical University of Munich
  • Adrian Gorniak Technical University of Munich
  • Tobias Eder Technical University of Munich
  • Daniel Bartmann Technical University of Munich
  • Burak Enes Çakici Technical University of Munich
  • Georg Groh Technical University of Munich



Social network analysis; communities identification; expertise and authority discovery, Organizational and group behavior mediated by social media; interpersonal communication mediated by social media, Centrality/influence of social media publications and authors, Qualitative and quantitative studies of social media


Because traditional social media platforms continue to ban actors spreading hate speech or other forms of abusive languages (a process known as deplatforming), these actors migrate to alternative platforms that do not moderate user content to the same degree. One popular platform relevant for the German community is Telegram for which limited research efforts have been made so far. This study aimed to develop a broad framework comprising (i) an abusive language classification model for German Telegram messages and (ii) a classification model for the hatefulness of Telegram channels. For the first part, we use existing abusive language datasets containing posts from other platforms to develop our classification models. For the channel classification model, we develop a method that combines channel-specific content information collected from a topic model with a social graph to predict the hatefulness of channels. Furthermore, we complement these two approaches for hate speech detection with insightful results on the evolution of German speaking communities focused on hateful content on the Telegram platform. We also propose methods for conducting scalable network analyses for social media platforms to the hate speech research community. As an additional output of this study, we provide an annotated abusive language dataset containing 1,149 annotated Telegram messages.




How to Cite

Wich, M., Gorniak, A., Eder, T., Bartmann, D., Çakici, B. E., & Groh, G. (2022). Introducing an Abusive Language Classification Framework for Telegram to Investigate the German Hater Community. Proceedings of the International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media, 16(1), 1133-1144.