Research on Language and Computation

, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp 333–353

Vagueness and Referential Ambiguity in a Large-Scale Annotated Corpus


DOI: 10.1007/s11168-008-9059-1

Cite this article as:
Versley, Y. Res on Lang and Comput (2008) 6: 333. doi:10.1007/s11168-008-9059-1


In this paper, we argue that difficulties in the definition of coreference itself contribute to lower inter-annotator agreement in certain cases. Data from a large referentially annotated corpus serves to corroborate this point, using a quantitative investigation to assess which effects or problems are likely to be the most prominent. Several examples where such problems occur are discussed in more detail, and we then propose a generalisation of Poesio, Reyle and Stevenson’s Justified Sloppiness Hypothesis to provide a unified model for these cases of disagreement and argue that a deeper understanding of the phenomena involved allows to tackle problematic cases in a more principled fashion than would be possible using only pre-theoretic intuitions.


Coreference annotation Vagueness Sloppiness 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Collaborative Research Center 441 “Linguistic Data Structures”University of TübingenTübingenGermany