Agreement Concerning Dissemination of TAC Results

The annual Text Analysis Conference (TAC) is an event in which organizations with an interest in Natural Language Processing take part in a coordinated series of experiments using the same experimental data. The results of these individual experiments are then presented at a workshop where tentative comparisons may be made. In order to preserve the desired pre-competitive nature of these conferences, the organizers have developed a set of guidelines constraining the dissemination and publication of TAC evaluation results. These guidelines are meant to preclude the publication of incomplete or inaccurate information that could damage the reputation of the conference or its participants and could discourage participation in future conferences. The guidelines apply to all TAC participants and to organizations requesting access to the archive of TAC results.

A signed agreement is required of each organization participating in the TAC evaluations or accessing the results archive. Any organization that is found to have violated the terms or spirit of the agreement may be denied participation in future TACs.

  1. SCIENTIFIC OR TECHNICAL PUBLICATIONS: Scientific or technical publications, including newsletters from universities or research laboratories, should adhere to community standards for fairness and objectivity and should accurately and clearly state the limitations of the testing conditions and other factors which might influence scores. The experimental nature of the tasks, data and evaluation procedures should also be stated. The full conference proceedings should always be referenced.
  2. ADVERTISEMENTS: No advertisements using the TAC evaluation results can be placed in magazines, journals, newspapers, or other publications.
  3. PRESS RELEASES: Press releases about TAC results to organizations with national/international coverage are also prohibited.
  4. MARKETING LITERATURE, LOCAL NEWSLETTERS: Although it is recognized that extensive evaluation discussions are not appropriate in this type of literature, it is expected that any claims made on the basis of evaluation results are accurate, that the evaluation measures used to substantiate these claims are stated, and that a reference is made to the full conference proceedings. Where promotional material is subject to prepublication revision by the media, the author should make every effort to see that the revision does not cause a violation of the guidelines.
  5. WEB SITES: Web sites are a type of marketing literature with a global distribution. The guidelines for marketing literature in general apply to web sites as well. References to TAC should link to the TAC web site.
  6. Cross-system comparisons may not be made with other named teams for individual tests, and may only be made when they are supported by accepted methods of statistical significance testing. Comparisons must be accompanied by the results of those tests and should reference the publication of those tests in the conference proceedings or related literature. Informal, qualitative comparisons with recognized baselines or benchmarks, and with general levels or trends in performance, must be clearly stated to be such and thus open to statistical reassessment.
  7. The TAC program manager must be notified of any publication that quotes or contains references to the TAC evaluation results, and must be provided with a copy of such publication upon request.
ENDORSEMENT (Please type):

I, _________________________________________________ (name), acting on behalf of ____________________________________________ (organization), acknowledge my understanding of the above guidelines and accept this agreement. As a condition of our participation in the TAC evaluation, and/or gaining access to the archive of TAC results, my organization and its employees and representatives agree to abide by these guidelines. I am qualified to make this commitment.

Signature _________________________________

Date: _______________

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