Telegram and Google will be investigated in Brazil

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Alexandre de Moraes, responsible for the case at the High Court, responded to a request from the Attorney General’s Office, which sees indications of “criminal conduct” before the “abusive and forced” actions that both platforms have carried out against the legislative initiative.

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Google and Telegram have published texts in recent weeks criticizing the so-called “fake news bill“, which has been drafted in Congress since 2020 and intends to regulate social networks and strengthen control over the content that circulates there.

In the case of the search engine, it published in its Brazilian version an article titled “‘Fake news’ PL (bill) may increase confusion about what is true or false in Brazil.”

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The publication was signed off by Google Brazil’s director of government relations and public policy, Marcelo Lacerda, and was withdrawn shortly after the government of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva threatened the company with sanctions if it kept it. on air.

The case of Telegram Telegram also challenged the project in another harsh message it launched against its users in which it described it as an attempt at “censorship” and a “attack on democracy”and claimed that its approval would mean the end of the “modern internet”.

This led to a forceful decision by De Moraes, who threatened to suspend the platform if he did not publish a corrigendum acknowledging that its text “featured flagrant and illegal disinformation, which threatens the National Congress, the Judiciary, the rule of law and Brazilian democracy”.

In this context, the Attorney General, following a complaint presented by the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Arthur Lira, asked the country’s highest court to investigate to the heads of the two technology companies in Brazil.

According to the indictment, Google and Telegram encouraged their users to lobby lawmakers to vote against the bill, which was due to be discussed in the plenary session of the lower house last week, but was postponed due to the risk of it being voted down. .

The bill sanctions the dissemination of false information on social networks and obliges platforms to remove content deemed inappropriate before a Court decisionamong other measures.

App blocking

Telegram has been blocked.  photo by AFP

Telegram has been blocked. photo by AFP

At the end of April this year, Brazil blocked the Telegram app.

Telegram argued that, as has happened in the past in China, Iran and Russia, it can leave Brazil if local laws threaten its mission to promote freedom of communication or impose technologically unfeasible demands on it.

“In Brazil, a court has asked us for data that is technologically impossible to obtain. We have appealed the decision and await a final decision,” said Pavel Durov, co-founder of Telegram, in a message that he posted on his account on the social network.

The executive added that “Regardless of the cost, we will defend our users in Brazil and their right to private communication.”

The messaging app stopped working Wednesday night in Brazil after an Espirito Santo state court ordered it suspended “temporary” services for their refusal to cooperate in a criminal investigation.

Source: Clarin

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