We consider the problem of event detection in video for scenarios where only
few, or even zero examples are available for training. For this challenging
setting, the prevailing solutions in the literature rely on a semantic video
representation obtained from thousands of pre-trained concept detectors.
Different from existing work, we propose a new semantic video representation
that is based on freely available social tagged videos only, without the need
for training any intermediate concept detectors. We introduce a simple
algorithm that propagates tags from a video's nearest neighbors, similar in
spirit to the ones used for image retrieval, but redesign it for video event
detection by including video source set refinement and varying the video tag
assignment. We call our approach TagBook and study its construction,
descriptiveness and detection performance on the TRECVID 2013 and 2014
multimedia event detection datasets and the Columbia Consumer Video dataset.
Despite its simple nature, the proposed TagBook video representation is
remarkably effective for few-example and zero-example event detection, even
outperforming very recent state-of-the-art alternatives building on supervised