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Elon Musk and Brazil are beefing over X

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Brazil has opened an investigation into Elon Musk over a possible obstruction of justice after the X proprietor mentioned he reactivated accounts on the social media platform Brazil had ordered the platform to dam.

The inquiry opened by Brazilian Supreme Court docket Justice Alexandre de Moraes on Sunday follows a string of heated interactions between Musk and the Brazilian authorities. On Saturday, X’s global government affairs team announced that “court docket selections” had compelled the platform to dam “sure common accounts” in Brazil and would face every day fines (of as much as $20,000, according to The Associated Press) if it did not comply.

“We’re prohibited from saying which court docket or decide issued the order, or on what grounds,” mentioned the affairs staff. “We consider that such orders will not be in accordance with the Marco Civil da Web or the Brazilian Federal Structure, and we problem the orders legally the place attainable.”

Heading Brazil’s high election court docket, Justice de Moraes has advocated for eliminating anti-democratic content material posted on-line within the wake of far-right rioters attacking authorities buildings on January 8th last year. The Brazilian judiciary said that disinformation is “a singular menace to Latin America’s largest nation,” having directed a number of crackdowns towards hate speech, incitement, and pretend information following the assault. 

It’s unclear if the order for X, the location previously often known as Twitter, to ban sure profiles is linked to supporters of former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro or members of the far-right motion concerned with the January eighth riots. The platform has, nonetheless, turn into a hotbed for misinformation and different dangerous rhetoric since being bought by Musk again in 2022, with the European Union recently criticizing X for failing to successfully reasonable false information across the Israel-Hamas war.

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“We can not stay in a society wherein billionaires domiciled overseas have management of social networks and put themselves able to violate the rule of legislation”

The order and subsequent investigation into Musk comes as Brazil requires “pressing” concentrate on social media regulation. “We can not stay in a society wherein billionaires domiciled overseas have management of social networks and put themselves able to violate the rule of legislation, failing to adjust to court docket orders and threatening our authorities,” Brazil’s lawyer common, Jorge Messias, posted to X on Saturday, seemingly concentrating on Musk. “Social peace is non-negotiable.”

Whereas positioning himself as an ardent defender of free speech, Musk has mentioned a number of occasions he’ll observe the rule of legislation the place required. In an interview with Don Lemon final month, Musk mentioned that X has a “accountability to stick to the legislation” and would take down unlawful content material. Final April, Forbes reported that X has absolutely complied with over 80 % of presidency censorship requests, in comparison with the roughly 50 % that had been accepted earlier than Musk took possession of the corporate.

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