Telegram: The group of prosecutors from the Federal Public Ministry (MPF) of São Paulo, which is conducting an inquiry into disinformation and fake news on social networks and messaging apps, is considering requesting the temporary blocking of Telegram during the 2022 elections. the messenger’s owners are interested in collaborating with the Brazilian justice system, and that it may be necessary to “take any necessary action in this context”.
The information was released this Tuesday (25) by Estadão. According to the vehicle, prosecutors were on alert after Russian programmer Pavel Durov, creator of Telegram, did not respond to contacts from Luís Roberto Barroso, president of the Superior Electoral Court (TSE). The entity that organizes the elections has already sent at least two e-mails and a physical document to the company’s headquarters, in the United Arab Emirates.
Because of the businessman’s refusal to talk about how to avoid the spread of fake news, the MPF/SP, which wants to ban electoral advertisements in apps, thinks of solutions to the situation. Simpler measures such as the conclusion of agreements have already been discarded, however.
One of the prosecutors even told the vehicle that, as it does not have an office and is not formalized in Brazil, the alternatives for dealing with Telegram are almost “unfeasible”. This is the diagnosis because, in addition to not responding to requests for contact, the directors and the messenger themselves technically do not respond to Brazilian laws.
“The problem is that, in this case of Telegram, we are not talking about a posture in defense of users. In the case of the TSE, no user data was requested, but a ‘cafezinho’. He (Barroso) is asking to sit down and talk, and this is not being answered. In the case of the MPF, we are not asking for data either. We request information such as the transparency report. There is no persecution of users”, defended prosecutor Yuri Corrêa da Luz, who asked Twitter to respond about the fight against false information in Brazil.
The concern of public authorities with Telegram is not new. It has long been known about the app’s potential to not only spread disinformation, but also harbor criminal content such as sex videos involving minors and arms and drug trafficking.