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User Action Interpretation for Online Content Optimization

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5 Author(s)
Jiang Bian ; Yahoo! Labs., Sunnyvale, CA, USA ; Anlei Dong ; Xiaofeng He ; Reddy, S.
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Web portal services have become an important medium to deliver digital content and service, such as news, advertisements, and so on, to Web users in a timely fashion. To attract more users to various content modules on the Web portal, it is necessary to design a recommender system that can effectively achieve online content optimization by automatically estimating content items' attractiveness and relevance to users' interests. User interaction plays a vital role in building effective content optimization, as both implicit user feedbacks and explicit user ratings on the recommended items form the basis for designing and learning recommendation models. However, user actions on real-world Web portal services are likely to represent many implicit signals about users' interests and content attractiveness, which need more accurate interpretation to be fully leveraged in the recommendation models. To address this challenge, we investigate a couple of critical aspects of the online learning framework for personalized content optimization on Web portal services, and, in this paper, we propose deeper user action interpretation to enhance those critical aspects. In particular, we first propose an approach to leverage historical user activity to build behavior-driven user segmentation; then, we introduce an approach for interpreting users' actions from the factors of both user engagement and position bias to achieve unbiased estimation of content attractiveness. Our experiments on the large-scale data from a commercial Web recommender system demonstrate that recommendation models with our user action interpretation can reach significant improvement in terms of online content optimization over the baseline method. The effectiveness of our user action interpretation is also proved by the online test results on real user traffic.

Published in:

Knowledge and Data Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:25 ,  Issue: 9 )

Date of Publication:

Sept. 2013

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