Call for Participation

Dear All,

this is the call to participate in the shared task on identification of offensive language GermEval 2018. We invite everyone from academia and industry to participate in the shared task on Identification of Offensive German Language.



Offensive Language is commonly defined as hurtful, derogatory or obscene comments made by one person to another person. This type of language can increasingly be found on the web. As a consequence many operators of social media websites no longer manage to manually monitor user posts. Therefore, there is a pressing demand for methods to automatically identify suspicious posts.

This pilot shared task is to initiate and foster research on the identification of offensive content in German language microposts. Offensive comments are to be detected from a set of German tweets. We focus on Twitter since tweets can be regarded as a prototypical type of micropost.

The workshop discussing this year’s edition of this shared task is planned to be held in conjunction with the Conference on Natural Language Processing (KONVENS ) in Vienna in September 2018.



Some sample data (i.e. 100 manually labeled tweets) and an evaluation script are now ready and available on our website (URL see above). The training data, which are going to be released in April, can be downloaded after registering with the organizing committee. The task evaluations will take place in July 2018. For more details please consult the GermEval-2018 website.



We offer the two tasks described below. Participants in this year’s shared task can choose to participate in one or both of them.


Task I — Binary classification

The task is to decide whether a tweet includes some form of offensive language or or not.


Task II — Fine-grained classification

In addition to detecting abusive language tweets, we distinguish between three subcategories:


PROFANITY: usage of profane words, however, the tweet clearly does not want to insult anyone.

INSULT: unlike PROFANITY the tweet clearly wants to offend someone.

ABUSE: unlike INSULT, the tweet does not just insult a person but represents the stronger form of abusive language


Important dates

  • March 2018 Release of Sample Data
  • April 2018 Release of Training Data
  • July 17, 2018 Release of Test Data
  • August 7, 2018: Submission of System Runs, System Description paper and Survey
  • August 14, 2018 Feedback on System Description papers
  • August 21, 2018 Final Submission of System Description papers
  • September 21, 2018 Workshop co-located with KONVENS-2018


GermEval is a series of shared task evaluation campaigns that focus on Natural Language Processing for the German language. So far, there have been three iterations of GermEval, each with a different type of task. GermEval shared tasks have been run informally by self-organized groups of interested researchers. However, the last shared task as well as the one for 2018 were endorsed by special interest groups within the German Society for Computational Linguistics (GSCL). All iterations of GermEval shared tasks held their concluding workshop in conjunction with either the GSCL or the KONVENS bi-annual conferences, depending on which of them took place.


Contact email


Mailing group

Please join our discussion group at in order to receive announcements and participate in discussions.


Best regards,

The GermEval 2018 Organizers:

Josef Ruppenhofer (Institute for German Language, Mannheim)

Melanie Siegel (Hochschule Darmstadt)

Michael Wiegand (Saarland University, Saarbrücken)