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Brazilian Judge Orders 24-hour Shutdown of Google and Youtube

Unknown Lamer posted about 2 years ago | from the internet-replaces-the-airwaves dept.

Google 339

_Sharp'r_ writes "Judge Flavio Peren of Mato Grosso do Sul state in Brazil has ordered the arrest of the President of Google Brazil, as well as the 24-hour shutdown of Google and Youtube for not removing videos attacking a mayoral candidate. Google is appealing, but has recently also faced ordered fines of $500K/day in Parana and the ordered arrest of another executive in Paraiba in similar cases." Early reports indicated that the judge also ordered the arrest of the Google Brazil President, but the story when this was written is that the police haven't received any such order (and an earlier such order was overuled recently). The video is in violation of their pre-election laws.

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Pre-election laws (2, Insightful)

Mkaks (2738943) | about 2 years ago | (#41461393)

Note that in this case it's about good censorship. Most countries on earth have these kind of pre-election rules to combat PR attack on the last hours of elections. Most sane countries have these laws. Since it's just 24 hours, it really just seems to ban it right before elections and is not some penalty on Google or Youtube. Google is intentionally breaking laws here and should be punished.

Re:Pre-election laws (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461441)

Don't you mean Google users?

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

isorox (205688) | about 2 years ago | (#41461623)

Don't you mean Google users?

Youtube isn't a common carrier, it censors a lot of stuff.

It's the same if CNN of Fox news broadcast this type of stuff during election day (which I assume is illegal in America)

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41461763)

I've never heard of a law prohibiting the reporting of news or running of ads in the US close to elections. I have even seen political adds run after the polls are closed and we are waiting for the count (guess some people do not think that far ahead).

I would imagine any law limiting speech would be over turned pretty fast as out first amendment free speech has long been interpreted to be especially pertaining to political speech..

Re:Pre-election laws (5, Informative)

ScentCone (795499) | about 2 years ago | (#41461857)

I've never heard of a law prohibiting the reporting of news or running of ads in the US close to elections

Then you missed out on part of McCain-Feingold, which did ban some speech along those lines. That's part of what the supreme court recently found to be unconstitutional: muzzling communication like that runs very contrary to one of the founding principles of our constitution. The law allowed, for example, a business like General Electric or News Corp (which both run media outlets, though of different political orientations) to use their editorial voices to communicate about candidates and ballot issues right up through poll closing - but prohibited others (like you or me, or groups we might join, like the NRA or Greenpeace and the like) from doing the same. Completely capricious, and justifiably shot down in the court. But it was the law of the land for a while there.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41462027)

Wow.. I remember the fuss about it but started to ignore the entire thing after it seemed to be pounded to death forever. That had completely slipped my mind. Thanks for pointing it out.

Re:Pre-election laws (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462165)

The constitution is a piece of trash if it allows Fox News.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Beyond_GoodandEvil (769135) | about 2 years ago | (#41462341)

Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 2 years ago | (#41462371)

The constitution is to Fox News as Slashdot is to AC posts.

Re:Pre-election laws (5, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | about 2 years ago | (#41461831)

It's the same if CNN of Fox news broadcast this type of stuff during election day (which I assume is illegal in America)

This is not the case. The US has possibly the strongest protection of freedom of speech in the world, and any such law would be in violation of the constitution.

But most other countries do consider freedom of speech to be a right that should be balanced with other rights. A fair election being one of them, and the belief that public criticism of a candidate without adequate time for the candidate to address the accusations would violate this right.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461891)

The US has possibly the strongest protection of freedom of speech in the world, and any such law would be in violation of the constitution.

The main purposes of the First Amendment were to ensure
i) the owners of the presses could be as biased as they like in their support for particular politicians;
ii) no oppression for non-CoE religions.

Never forget that America was founded by salesmen and Puritans.

Re:Pre-election laws (5, Insightful)

Cornwallis (1188489) | about 2 years ago | (#41461451)

Good censorship = censorship. Fuck you.

Re:Pre-election laws (1, Interesting)

Mkaks (2738943) | about 2 years ago | (#41461463)

So in your opinion you should be allowed to shout fire in a crowded theater, too?

Re:Pre-election laws (4, Insightful)

N1AK (864906) | about 2 years ago | (#41461511)

I'm yet to speak to someone who spouts nonsense about all censorship being wrong who actually understands and accepts the consequences that come with it. You'll never talk them round because they've taken an ideological position, without real consideration, so they're not the kind of people who are going to accept a contrary, yet rational, position.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461517)

Beware, Mike Godwin is watching you.

Re:Pre-election laws (5, Insightful)

Xest (935314) | about 2 years ago | (#41461627)

You are allowed to do exactly that, no one's stopping you, it's simply that there are consequences, this is not censorship.

Censorship is the enforced blocking of information, it's the preventing of it even being broadcast which is exactly what's being asked for here.

If this were the same as punishment for shouting fire in a crowded theatre then the judge would simply fine them for distributing false information or jail the person who posted it for libel etc. This is not what is being done though, this is outright censorship, and yes, it's bad.

shouting fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461893)

Then form an orderly queue as you pass through the well marked and lit emergency exits.

The use of this as justification of limits on free speech again again is getting old. Its a meme that has had its day, move on.

Re:shouting fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462349)

presumably if someone sets a theatre on fire, yells fire, walks out then broadcasts across the national media that *you* started the fire, then that's just dandy too, yeah?

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461639)

If someone yells fire in a crouded theater, should you arrest the president of the company that made the prints?

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

TemperedAlchemist (2045966) | about 2 years ago | (#41461871)

Yes.

Because that's the price of freedom, and I'm not willing to sacrifice my freedom for any of that temporary safety. Don't get me started on free speech zones and other egregious acts the US government, of all entities, has done to grind the gears of the constitution's spirit of the law. "If we can't remove them, let's just water them down," sort of thing.

Or should we prohibit anyone from speaking a dissenting opinion than the governments, because think of all the people that could be hurt by those words. Never mind that our system of law holds people accountable for their actions and affirms they have the ability to choose: my shouting fire in a crowded movie theater forced those people to trample over that girl.

Oh, and people don't have to shout fire in a crowded movie theater anymore -- that's why we have fire alarms.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 2 years ago | (#41461983)

Because that's the price of freedom, and I'm not willing to sacrifice my freedom for any of that temporary safety... Oh, and people don't have to shout fire in a crowded movie theater anymore -- that's why we have fire alarms.

What about when your "freedom" has a direct impact on my safety? If you yell "Fire!" in a crowded theatre, there is panic and people fight to escape. People been trampled to death trying to escape. You also fail to address the point that it is completely legal to shout "Fire!" in a theatre if there is indeed a fire.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

JockTroll (996521) | about 2 years ago | (#41461873)

Of course. How else are you going to tell your guys to shoot the audience with automatic weapons?

Re:Pre-election laws (4, Informative)

zill (1690130) | about 2 years ago | (#41461911)

How else are you going warn everyone about the theater fire?

Justice Holmes' exact words were " falsely shouting fire in a theater [wikipedia.org] ". Please get it right next time.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

WGFCrafty (1062506) | about 2 years ago | (#41462083)

How else are you going warn everyone about the theater fire? Justice Holmes' exact words were " falsely shouting fire in a theater [wikipedia.org] ". Please get it right next time.

Falsely yelling fire in a crowded theater has traditionally been charged as libel due to emotional and monetary damage to the usually quite distraught theater.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462245)

It's not written down. Shouting in public would be slander.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462075)

Everyone always say that, but that case, Schenck in Brandenburg v. Ohio, is where the judge (Justice Oliver Wendall Holmes, Jr.) used that example and the ruling in that case was overturned many many years ago. The case itself had to do with literature opposing the military draft during WWI.

I find it interesting that so many people use that example as though it holds some sort of weight.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

rickb928 (945187) | about 2 years ago | (#41462273)

Try and censor me. That is prior restraint, and while you can, theoretically stop a book from being sold. you will have harder time stopping me from yelling anything once.

then you put me in jail, ostensibly for endangering others, even if my speech merely endangered your profits.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#41462333)

You really can't see the difference between the two? Honestly?

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

QuantumPion (805098) | about 2 years ago | (#41462345)

If it's actually on fire, then YES.

If you pass a law banning the yelling of fire in a crowded theater, even when it actually is on fire, then what will the result be?

Re:Pre-election laws (3, Interesting)

91degrees (207121) | about 2 years ago | (#41461483)

Yes, but libel laws, prohibitions on death threats, and prohibitions on publishing government secrets are also censorship. Censorship itself is just a label. Calling something that doesn't automatically make it bad.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

rtb61 (674572) | about 2 years ago | (#41461687)

Google however has to be notified of these violations. Each and every violation has to be discovered, reported and confirmed. A you tube video can be re-released at depth throughout the world and Brazil only has jurisdiction over publication and readership within Brazil and definitely more on the publication side and far less on the readership side. So if the video is uploaded outside of Brazil and read by people outside of Brazil then Brazil has zero jurisdiction.

What really needs to happen is a different channel of distribution of political adds needs to be created, to take into account the internet age. Logically a federal government, each country to it's own, server farm hosting all political commercial, federal, state and local. This channel is to be mandated as the only legitimately channel for the distribution of political content with fines associated with the commercial distribution of content sourced from all other locations. This with a public information campaign to inform people of the archival distribution point for all political campaign material, nothing alterable and nothing deletable, all material for re-distribution upon a commercial basis must be sourced from recorded copy.

Next up will be prosecution of Facebook and Twitter. More purposeful assaults on free speech.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 years ago | (#41462145)

Seriously true.

This is the new media we are talking about here. It is wider and busier and less controlable than ever before. The mob is the media. Let's consider how we control such media. It's pretty hard to imagine already. Let's get our news from 4chan.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462381)

it's SO uncontrollable that they decided to arbitrarily block searches on the word "bisexual" for no reason!

I'll throw my mod point away there is good censors (3, Informative)

aepervius (535155) | about 2 years ago | (#41461497)

case in point pornography is recognized as to be limited to certain class of ages, and various type of media are limited by ages. Also you can't yell fire in theater, another good type of censorship and similar. Finally libel laws are certainly limitation and therefor censorship of some type of speech, and in some country if you swear and insult a policeman you can get fined. In such a case , the censorship is to make sure *everybody* is on the same level shortly before the election, without a media blitz. Such law exists actually in many country. So yeah your insinuation that there is no good censorship is noted but completely ridiculous.

Re:I'll throw my mod point away there is good cens (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461823)

"case in point pornography is recognized as to be limited to certain class of ages, and various type of media are limited by ages"

That doesn't mean any of this is actually good though. It's such a controversal subject that no one's really got the balls to study it, but those that have have suggested that just as controlled provision of drugs to addicts is a better way to ween them off it than simply trying to ban the substance outright, that working with paedophiles and controlling their access to this sort of information, and similarly allowing kids access to age restricted content are better than prohibition.

What is actually a better idea is spending those resources that are otherwise spent enforcing this sort of thing going after those producing the content in the first place - i.e. actually catching cold hard child abusers and those who fuel the industry by profiting off of it rather than those who simply consume it. Spending those resources actually protecting children is a far superior option to wasting money censoring it with no demonstrable positive effect despite much money being spent lobbying that there is. As there's no evidence that viewing content does actually make you more likely to commit a crime based on said content, what do you think is better? Allowing those people to view that content free on the internet, or forcing them underground where they actually have to give money to people who profit off said content and hence driving the production of said content causing real actual harm to the people who suffer from it?

It's the same with copyright, the music industry claims that downloading MP3s funds terrorism and organised crime but that's exactly backwards - preventing people downloading MP3s means they'll just buy their music cheap from dodgy backstreet dealers where the money genuinely does go to organised crime and terrorism.

Your argument is based on the assumption that laws we have are exactly right, and are the best and only way to deal with some of societies issues, but that assumption seems almost certainly likely to be false.

I'm not against encouraging people not be stupid - i.e. shouting fire in a crowded theatre by fining/jailing them, but that's not censorship. They're allowed to do it, they're just encouraged not to by ensuring there are consequences and there IS a subtle difference between outright censorship, and nudging people towards censoring themselves whatever people say.

Re:I'll throw my mod point away there is good cens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461855)

even is a law in many countries it doesn't make it right! The so called good censorship it's only a matter of majority definition and this doesn't make it right neither. I don' say it's right or wrong.

Re:I'll throw my mod point away there is good cens (4, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | about 2 years ago | (#41462303)

Pornography. I'm still not so sure pornography is bad.

We like to watch entertainment of the things we like or are interested in. We watch food shows. No one has a problem with that. We watch beauty contests. No one... okay, 'few' have a problem with that. Olympics? Fishing? Golf? Fighting!! You name it; if someone likes it, there's a form of entertainment which will be produced about it. But because it involves sex, a rather basic and extremely universal pleasure in the animal world, we have to say "oh no..."

What we fear, dislike or disapprove of about sex has more to do with religious and social values than anything else. Remove those from the equation and you will see less "forbidden fruit." Suddenly people aren't making unsubstantiated claims like "it harms children!" You know what harms children? Curiosity which isn't managed by adults. Knives, fire, fireworks, guns, heights, roads and streets... sex isn't quite as dangerous as any of those other things and yet somehow we are more concerned over whether or not they know what their 'things' are for than just about anything else.

MOD PARENT -1 OVERRATED (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461507)

Typical first post style thoughtless comment. As others have already said, censorship is just a label and sure I think we can agree that censorship is generally a bad thing, but to categorically say censorship is always bad is silly. There are plenty of times where freedom of speech is suppressed where the marginal value of the speech to society as a whole are outweighed by the negative effects such as yelling fire in a crowd or libeling others or revealing government information that actually jeopardizes national security (launch codes to nukes, not just politicians using it as a cover-up for when they are caught in a web of lies).

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

safehaven25 (2587445) | about 2 years ago | (#41461515)

this isnt informative, its incredibly ignorant

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461519)

This is about timing not speech. Due to the fact that within the few days leading up to the election it is impossible for an opponent to address accusations and prove them lies.

As such this law is not preventing someone from saying something. But is instead ensuring it is said at a point where both political sides are able to ensure that they can defend or argue in opposition to it.

This is not censorship as opposed to protection of the political process and prevention of the use of the election datge to froce out lies and incorrect facts in the last few days.

You can say it you just have to do so within a reasonable time.

Most courts also require you to word your accusations within a reasonable time for the defense to respond.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461593)

So you are one of those child porn terrorist human trafficking druglords are you now?

Sir, would you have a seat, we have some questions for you.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

DrXym (126579) | about 2 years ago | (#41461693)

Good censorship = censorship. Fuck you.

Many countries legally impose a moratorium or broadcasters impose a code of conduct prior to an election to ensure it is as free and fair as possible. So as to provide voters with a period of reflection prior to the vote and to stop last minute electioneering and underhanded tactics that could adversely affect the outcome. e.g. one candidate tweets that another has dropped out the race, or is a child molestor etc. But oh its censorship so it's bad right?

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Entropius (188861) | about 2 years ago | (#41461977)

There is a big difference between censorship and the prosecution of fraud.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

DanielHC (623431) | about 2 years ago | (#41462115)

Good censorship = censorship. Fuck you.

As a brazilian, I second you. The laws this judge is applying are the same that, in past elections, prohibited comedians to make jokes about candidates. It's just plain stupid censorship.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | about 2 years ago | (#41462155)

So in your view noone can be blamed for the consequences of their speech?

Let's say I take a 5 years old, I convince him that jumping out of the window is safe and I watch him do it. I would not be guilty of anything in regard of the law? After all, I just talked to the boy! That has to be legal!

And if your answer is that I would be found guilty, it means my speech can bring me to jail, so in effect, I do not benefit from free speech since I can be jailed for saying something a judge find objectionable.

Let me know.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

Xtense (1075847) | about 2 years ago | (#41461509)

I disagree whether the censorship is good or whether good censorship actually exists. I understand the existence of pre-election silence laws (though I may not entirely understand why they're there in the first place - wouldn't it be better to be able to inform yourself about whom you might vote on no matter the period of the voting process? But that's beside the point), but in this case local laws are used to enforce upon content hosted outside the country, which just isn't acceptable. You could make the tired argument that THE INTERNET DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY, but what actually bothers me is that the lawmakers have no idea what it actually is - i mean, what's to stop me from uploading the same video to every other video hosting site out there (other than personal convenience of course)? The Internet is NOT tv. The Internet is NOT radio. The Internet is NOT a centrally-governed and representable entity. Don't like it? Don't participate.

Re:Pre-election laws (4, Insightful)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41461717)

Several things here. Google has offices within the local jurisdiction making them culpable for violations of it. Google can likely restrict access to IP's outside the country like they did with that movie trailer thing a week or so ago. We know they have the ability and they have done it already.

Nothing is to stop you from copying the video and posting it everywhere you can find. The companies that have offices within the country that has local jurisdiction will have to remove it or face the same problems as Google it. The services and companie who do not have local offices can ignore the mandates, law and so on unless they plan on visiting and/or opening local offices up within that jurisdiction in the future. Unless some sort of international treaty with a country they have offices within provides otherwise, Brazil can fine and issue arrest warrant all day long on people not within their jurisdiction and nothing can be done about it outside that unless the companies get within their jurisdiction somehow- invasion, treaty, visiting the country, opening shop within the country and so on..

Now on to censorship. Please do not confuse the right to free speech with a mandate that someone provide you a platform or stage for that speech. If a company has offices in a country and doing business within that country, they are obliged to follow the local laws of the country. If that means blocking access to a video on their servers or removing it entirely, then they have to do it or suffer the penalties of breaking the laws. Google already censors a lot of stuff voluntarily- Google already complies with local laws in certain area they have offices in. It's not a big deal for them to comply with this.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

Xtense (1075847) | about 2 years ago | (#41461827)

So what you're saying is that i could upload some anti-government stuff onto Youku or whatever is China's Youtube equivalent and the company would be liable just by virtue of residing in the local jurisdiction, even if the country of origin of the upload and the hosting servers themselves were outside the country?

Unacceptable.

I understand how it works NOW, but to me this is a critical case of legal vacuum, where current laws do not accurately reflect reality - punishing the carrier for something that is expressly legal where the service is provided (and the service is hosting video, which you then download for viewing. Accessing the video is something your ISP does, since that means connecting to the Internet) rather than the content creator/uploader is counter-productive, while banning access to the content provider also targets legitimate users. Penalizing a company which happens to host the content just because it has offices in your country is wrong, since they are penalizing them for a crime they did not, in actual fact, commit, that is - hosting an infringing video on the territory of Brazil.

That said, it works both ways - downloading some content and putting it up outside of the original jurisdiction switches the law's applicability to the exact place where the content is hosted, NOT where it is accessible from. If I suddenly decide to rehost some pirated movies, there is no law from the originating country that can be applicable in this situation - only local laws.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41462007)

So what you're saying is that i could upload some anti-government stuff onto Youku or whatever is China's Youtube equivalent and the company would be liable just by virtue of residing in the local jurisdiction, even if the country of origin of the upload and the hosting servers themselves were outside the country?

Unacceptable.

Lets look at it in a little more obvious way. Suppose you live in England and ask me to help you do something. That something is to have merchandise ordered from the internet delivered to my home so I can mail them in non-descriptive packages to you for the purpose of avoiding the VAT fees. Now suppose you do this using stolen credit cards and I knew it was happening. Does the fact that you are in a foreign country absolve me of any laws I broke in the US in the process of this plan? No, it absolutely does not. I may even be liable for the credit card fraud as well as the usual conspiracy and receiving stolen goods crap they could throw at me.

You may think it is unacceptable, but it is the way it is. You simply have to accept that different countries have different laws and if anyone within their jurisdiction violates those laws, they can be held accountable and punished under them.

I understand how it works NOW, but to me this is a critical case of legal vacuum, where current laws do not accurately reflect reality - punishing the carrier for something that is expressly legal where the service is provided (and the service is hosting video, which you then download for viewing. Accessing the video is something your ISP does, since that means connecting to the Internet) rather than the content creator/uploader is counter-productive, while banning access to the content provider also targets legitimate users. Penalizing a company which happens to host the content just because it has offices in your country is wrong, since they are penalizing them for a crime they did not, in actual fact, commit, that is - hosting an infringing video on the territory of Brazil.

I hope you understand that hosting the infringing video isn't the problem. It's allowing it to be accessible within the country for a certain period of time because of the elections.

That said, it works both ways - downloading some content and putting it up outside of the original jurisdiction switches the law's applicability to the exact place where the content is hosted, NOT where it is accessible from. If I suddenly decide to rehost some pirated movies, there is no law from the originating country that can be applicable in this situation - only local laws.

Well, actually- with all the copyright treaties, specifically the wipo WTC and WTTP, there is a bit more difficulty because each signatory country is supposed to honor the laws concerning copyright of other countries as long as they are in line with the two treaties unless they have similar laws and prosecute for the infraction. And yes, I do not have a link handy but this has been tested already. People from within the US have been busted and prosecuted for hosting copyrighted materials on servers in other nations and people in other countries have been extradited to the US for prosecution under US laws when their home country did not have a law that was being violated. One was with sharman networks (Lime wire) I think, another was from Australia too.

But this situation is not about copyrighted materials. It is about speech and the obligations of a company who is doing business within a country. It doesn't matter that the content may be somewhere else, the company will have to obey the laws of the land they are in.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Xtense (1075847) | about 2 years ago | (#41462117)

So let's see here: in your example, the actual laws broken are:

Using stolen credit cards (only i am liable, since i am the buyer, the connections originated from my computer and i accepted the transaction, you weren't involved in the buying process in any way - and, also, this is a crime in both countries, which a major and important difference in our case).
Tax dodging (we're both liable in theory, depends too much on individual import/VAT laws - not applicable in our case since packets are not dutiable)
Willingly aiding in commiting a crime in your country (you're only liable if you knew - this has to be proven before the court.)

The example is flawed because it tries to translate packets as physical goods being transferred, while (together with me!) THE INTERNET DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY. This is also where the similarities break down: you were not "hosting packages" - if anything, you acted as a proxy server. The shops were our hosting services and they are not liable for accepting stolen credit cards since they have no way of knowing. Returning the money and demanding the return of goods, of course - but that is a whole different set of laws.

The basis of it all is that the Internet does not translate well to real life, and, as such, requires a whole new set of laws to accurately represent what is actually happening between computers.

Now: accessing the video.
And i understand the fault lies in the hoster of the video that the video can be accessed, not the actual facilitator of the connection, e.g. an ISP? On whose behalf was the connection initiated - youtube, or a client requesting it? The ISP acts as you in your example, a proxy towards receiving illegal materials. Now, whether the proxy can be liable for that is a whole another story, but it would be cosmically retarded if the ISP had to monitor what you browse whether you're breaking any laws - as with you, whether the purchases I make are with stolen credit cards or not. The burden of proof lies on the accuser, not the accused.

The last example is just a matter of how the laws are formed and ratified - if I were prosecuted under any of them, it is due to it being ratified in the country where the content was hosted - so, in essence, i really would be prosecuted under local law, it's just that the local law specifies a distinct form of action under it - that is, extradition and allowing prosecution under laws in a different country. An important semantic difference!

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41462271)

The basis of it all is that the Internet does not translate well to real life, and, as such, requires a whole new set of laws to accurately represent what is actually happening between computers.

Not really new laws but common sense on existing laws. The first analogy failed but it didn't fail. Google, who is making the video available, is located within the jurisdiction of the country with the laws, and they are breaking real laws- even if they are ridiculous laws.

Now: accessing the video.
And i understand the fault lies in the hoster of the video that the video can be accessed, not the actual facilitator of the connection, e.g. an ISP? On whose behalf was the connection initiated - youtube, or a client requesting it? The ISP acts as you in your example, a proxy towards receiving illegal materials. Now, whether the proxy can be liable for that is a whole another story, but it would be cosmically retarded if the ISP had to monitor what you browse whether you're breaking any laws - as with you, whether the purchases I make are with stolen credit cards or not. The burden of proof lies on the accuser, not the accused.

This is a bit tricky because of the video was on TV, the user turning it on and tuning into a channel wouldn't be liable. It would be the person making it available. Likewise, youtube is making the video available. But here is an important distinction and the US as well as England does this all the time. We set up long and short wave radio stations as well as TV and AM/FM radio stations. We then broadcast propaganda into hostile areas attempting to gain the confidence of the people within them and subtly undermining their leadership (presumably our enemy). We do this outside the jurisdictional boundaries of the country so the country can pass any law it want, impose any fine it wants, but it cannot enforce it unless they invade and assert sovereignty over us. Had this been done by anyone within their jurisdictional boundaries, the penalties for violating the laws, the fines and all that would apply. Had Google not had an office in Brazil, they could just tell them to stick it where the sun don't shine.

The last example is just a matter of how the laws are formed and ratified - if I were prosecuted under any of them, it is due to it being ratified in the country where the content was hosted - so, in essence, i really would be prosecuted under local law, it's just that the local law specifies a distinct form of action under it - that is, extradition and allowing prosecution under laws in a different country. An important semantic difference!

Well, I did say it gets a lot more complicated because of all the international agreements and treaties. I find no fault in your interpretation outside of a possible condition that could allow someone within the country to do something entirely legal not knowing they were subject to US law or what ever for that act. That's not even a disagreement with you. It's just an expression of my distaste over the possible situation.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

LordLucless (582312) | about 2 years ago | (#41461971)

Now on to censorship. Please do not confuse the right to free speech with a mandate that someone provide you a platform or stage for that speech

Sorry, but that's a straw man. If a "platform or stage" (ie: YouTube) is being constrained by law from broadcasting material, then it most definitely a case of free speech, not of an individual demanding they be provided with a channel.

You can argue whether it's justified in this case, and as others have noted, there are legitimate reasons for certain types of speech in certain situations to be restricted. But it most definitely a free speech issue.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#41462069)

Sorry, but that's a straw man. If a "platform or stage" (ie: YouTube) is being constrained by law from broadcasting material, then it most definitely a case of free speech, not of an individual demanding they be provided with a channel.

Well, it is. If it is illegal to block the road, set up and amplifier, and start preaching one Monday morning while everyone is trying to get to work, then doing it would be illegal. You are still being constrained by a law- it makes no difference how free or what speech it was.

Now is it censorship, you bet. But like I said, you are not guaranteed a platform or a stage to make your speech from. Especially when you or someone on your behalf are violating a law to achieve it.

You can argue whether it's justified in this case, and as others have noted, there are legitimate reasons for certain types of speech in certain situations to be restricted. But it most definitely a free speech issue.

I think we might be running circles around each other a bit. I did not mean to imply that the speech issue disappeared. Just that Google has an obligation to follow the laws in the lands it has offices in or it will find itself facing penalties for failing to do that. It is google that needs to decide what they are willing to do, they aren't obligated to host the speech.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461541)

So, why Brazil doesn't follow the steps of Iran and creates a private network? Censorship is always a bat thing. The videos aren't posted anonymously, so, the Brazilian Constitution defines it its 5 article that freedom of expression is granted but the anonimity in this case is forbidden... The user has to be responsible, not the media (google, facebook, or any other). This Brazilian's Law have no needs to get clarified. 'Google' is a service, so, blocking them, many people will be affected, this is not right. Is arbitrary and ridiculous.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

dshk (838175) | about 2 years ago | (#41461555)

Why do you think that they intentionally break laws? On our website there are visitors from all over the world, including the most exotic countries too. I guess from each and every country. Do you think that I have even the slightest idea about the pre-election and other rules and laws of 200 countries? I am sure there is no single university professor who knows all of that, even if we consider only the pre-election rules. Not to mention that these are changing continuously. What I am supposed to do? Firewall the servers and allow only countries where we have a legal representative? (Assuming that it would be possible, but it is not, there is no precise, stable IP address list about the countries.)

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about 2 years ago | (#41461989)

It's a difficult case; I can easily see this becoming an abusive precedent, where pernicious lawsuits are filed just to block Google/Youtube access to LEGITIMATE information on the web about a candidate.

It seems absurd on the face of it to suggest that it's Google's responsibility to block access to specific data in specific regions according to their local election schedule. If my local town of 1000 people has a mayoral election, can we 'insist' that Google block politically relevant (whatever that mean?) videos in my area for any period of time?

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462131)

Bullshit... elections in Brasil will be on Oct 7, so it's not just 24 hours before elections, it's for the whole duration of the campaign. This law is retarded and is made to silence any critics.

Nelson HA HA Nelson (1)

jafiwam (310805) | about 2 years ago | (#41462233)

HA HA Look at the third world shitholes struggle with lack of free speech! You are never going to get off your tiny island if you keep it up!

Google should just shut off their entire net-block forever. Let them rot in the dark without information.

Re:Pre-election laws (1)

Flavianoep (1404029) | about 2 years ago | (#41462299)

Nope, the elections will take place on October 7th.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462321)

Wrong again. They wanted Google to take down the videos so they could then say that Google can take down any videos they want and if they leave them up then they agree with them. This has nothing to do with the law and everything to do with trying to get Youtube out of Brazil so their own state run video site can take over.

Re:Pre-election laws (2)

pla (258480) | about 2 years ago | (#41462339)

Google is intentionally breaking laws here and should be punished.

BS. "Google" has not, intentionally or not, done anything here. Some Brazilian citizen has chosen to violate their laws, try going after the actual problem.

Consider this from a slightly different angle - If Google had no official presence in Brazil, how would this headline read? Hint - More along the lines of a Great Firewall style pissing-in-the-wind, than some sort of BS "arrest the messenger" attack on free speech.


Dear Brazil (and every other government on the planet) - Welcome to the Internet: Not yours to shut down. Have a nice day.

Re:Pre-election laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462355)

The election is Oct 7. A 24 hour ban is not going to do much. If this was about affecting elections, the ban would be until Oct 8 but it's for 24 hours. Something is corrupt here.

Brazil.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461529)

One country that have a lot of potential to became a super power, has a archaic justice system
where laws not always are applied, politicians never go arrested and also they never have public forum,
and the last president didn't do anything good in 8 years, just did what communists does better.... lies and benefits to any one.
If they say that is a Democratic country, this sort of thing should be allowed as in any other Democratic country does. It's a joke that judge.
 

Re:Brazil.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461605)

Being a Brazilian living in Europe since 2005, my opinion is yes, there is some inefficiency but that is not the problem. France [guardian.co.uk] and Germany [bbc.co.uk] also have corruption and all the inefficiency you want. I see Brazil as an exploited country which still has chains tying it to serve more developed countries.

Brazil can censor this (0)

bkerensa (634824) | about 2 years ago | (#41461537)

I guess free speech in brazil is out of the question....

Re:Brazil can censor this (4, Insightful)

cheros (223479) | about 2 years ago | (#41461589)

Nope. This is (yet again) about a US company trying to pretend that only US law applies as soon as they enter another country. Google is just the most visible example of that, and I support this decision.

If you want to sell services in a country and generate revenue, you damn well have to follow the local laws there or get fined. Simple.

Re:Brazil can censor this (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461651)

Brazil doesn't have "local laws", it has an incomprehensible bureaucratic clusterfuck. Terry Gilliam made a movie about it.

Re:Brazil can censor this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461729)

Oh, so your inability to understand the laws is then an excuse to simply ignore them?

That would be an excellent approach to US law, actually. Most of that is hard to understand. OK, that has more to do with not being able to believe anyone sane could actually agree to some of them, but the general principle applies.

Comply, or face the consequences. As a matter of fact, I am completely in agreement with prison sentences too - fines merely disappear as the cost of business..

Re:Brazil can censor this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461675)

Man brazilians are attacking our freedom! and are socialists! let's invade the damn reds!

Now the serious part:
this type of laws also exist in my country this is to prevent political campaign in the day before and in the election day...
so if i from political party X go into the street and start making campaign someone might snitch or the police sees me an both me and our party get fined (the same is also true if you are a company campaigning for someone)

Google is operating in a coutry that has such laws so they must follow them and there is nothing more to be said...
When you (a foreigner) are in someones country you must respect their authority, laws, and society... if you don't want to do that better be prepared to face the consequences...

First Thing That Comes To Mind: (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461621)

President Google, a browser in Brazil is caching

SHUT

DOWN

EVERYTHING!

Brazilian Autocracy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461625)

Politics in Brazil is under control of the Government these laws are not intended to help population but to control.

Other countries are only noticing that now because we are on the spotlight.

Voters Are Gonna Love It (1)

Shinmera (2514940) | about 2 years ago | (#41461647)

I'm sure all the people who want/need to use google / youtube on a daily basis are going to be so happy with this ruling.

Obligatory (4, Insightful)

Xtense (1075847) | about 2 years ago | (#41461663)

I hate trotting out this quote every so often, but...

"As the Americans learned so painfully in Earth's final century, free flow of information is the only safeguard against tyranny. The once-chained people whose leaders at last lose their grip on information flow will soon burst with freedom and vitality, but the free nation gradually constricting its grip on public discourse has begun its rapid slide into despotism. Beware of he who would deny you access to information, for in his heart he dreams himself your master."

Commissioner Pravin Lal
"U.N. Declaration of Rights"

From Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri.

Re:Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461825)

I'll have you know that I have never seen this quote before and so it has, once again, served. Thank-you. ...sorry to post as an Anonymous Coward, but those are slashdot's words.

Re:Obligatory (2)

guises (2423402) | about 2 years ago | (#41461927)

I don't know about this particular law, but laws regarding promotional material for elections (or defamatory material) are generally there to help prevent corruption. Same applies to campaign finance, which is essentially the same thing. If you're an American in the last few years after Citizens United, you've seen how quickly things can go south when the gloves are completely removed.

It's nice to have an absolute ideal to quote and strive for, but the absolute usually fails in the real world.

Re:Obligatory (3, Interesting)

Xtense (1075847) | about 2 years ago | (#41461985)

We have almost exactly the same laws as Brazil over here in Poland regarding the pre-election period (the so-called "Electorial Silence", where no campaigning is permitted). Since recovering from the USSR, the only thing this law was good for is getting the tv and radio to STFU. Meanwhile, corruption during this period ran rampant - the currently ruling party was almost always running its shady business during this period, while the opposing parties were buying votes and otherwise screwing with the voting process. They were caught multiple times, but due to the law, it was forbidden to report on it during this period.

So no, I don't think this is actually a very good law.

That's how you deal with Big Business (4, Insightful)

captainpanic (1173915) | about 2 years ago | (#41461677)

Good job, Brazil: If they don't listen to the law, give them a fine high enough that it's relevant, and arrest the responsible people.

I'm not choosing sides whether this is good or bad censorship. I'm just delighted that they have the balls to stand up to large companies. Not every country does that... and in almost every case the responsible management get away with it without any punishment. Most punishments are fines, which will just slightly reduce profit. Arresting the management might get their attention.

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461803)

Unfortunately, this is just an example of *bigger* business dealing with business.

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (2)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | about 2 years ago | (#41462105)

I would like to agree with you. But as a Brazilian I am sorry to inform you that it is merely another case of our judges who think they are gods and wanting to show who is the boss (but without the necessary competence to do so). If the case involved a "mere ordinary mortal" like me, they would not do anything about

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (0)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 2 years ago | (#41462169)

Arrest the responsible people? Did Google produce the video? Did the specific Brazilian Google President produce the video personally himself and post it on his own Youtube account?

No.

The responsible people are those who produced and uploaded the video. Not Youtube.

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (2)

BadgerRush (2648589) | about 2 years ago | (#41462287)

The moment this “specific Brazilian Google President” chose to violate a court order to keep an illegal video online he is responsible.

The same way, if someone advertised illegal stuff (lets say drugs) on ebay, and they refused to take it down even after a court order, they would be breaking the law and facing arrest as well.

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (4, Informative)

bloodhawk (813939) | about 2 years ago | (#41462291)

Arrest the responsible people? Did Google produce the video? Did the specific Brazilian Google President produce the video personally himself and post it on his own Youtube account?

No.

The responsible people are those who produced and uploaded the video. Not Youtube.

There is nothing inherently illegal with the video, however most countries in the world have very specific laws around advertising just before an election and all forms of media need to comply with those laws, it doesn't mater who produced it, what matters is that google refused to remove it in a timely manner. In most western countries this is actually considered a pretty severe breach of advertising and election laws that can result in criminal prosecutions.

Re:That's how you deal with Big Business (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462225)

Are you as out of your mind as this judge? In case you don't know - Google is not the internet. Arrest Steve Ballmer for selling Powerpoint sure - that's criminally insane and it's clearly Microsoft's product. But Google didn't make the web.

$500K (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461685)

They will probably make more than $500K/day in Brazil by keeping it online.

Oh how the mighty have fallen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461733)

Brasil had a chance at one point. Not even 10 years ago it was a flourishing enterprise that had all the potential in the world to join the first world. Employment was rising. Education was improving. Poverty rates were falling. They were making the changes they needed to make to get everyone moving.

Then the leftists took over and now it's Venezuela II. You had better think twice about trying to be successful in Brasil now. The moment you get one rung higher than any other monkey on the ladder, someone with guns and tanks is going to be aiming for you, to take what you have earned for the State, and slice off a tiny piece of it for some token entitlement to guarantee their re-election.

It's amazing what a decade can do. Brasil has gone from industrial and technological revolution to leftist, entitlement empire in just a few short years.

World bank disagrees (4, Informative)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | about 2 years ago | (#41461811)

Brazilian GNP [google.co.uk] - as sourced by Google.

Re:World bank disagrees (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | about 2 years ago | (#41462129)

GNP is not a measure of business climate or government hostility towards economic progress. It could be that they are still progressing for now despite the Brazilian government's best efforts to punish success. It was only recently that the leftists took over. It will be some time before the change in policy shows up in economic numbers.

Re:Oh how the mighty have fallen (0)

BlueStrat (756137) | about 2 years ago | (#41461955)

Brasil has gone from industrial and technological revolution to leftist, entitlement empire in just a few short years.

Don't be too hard on Brazil.

After all, they're just following the US's example in a race to the bottom. It's just taking the US longer because we had more freedom and wealth to start with before the Left gained control.

Winston Churchill had some relevant thoughts here:

(Note that "Liberalism" as Churchill uses it here more closely resembles US conservative (small-"C") views.)

Socialism seeks to pull down wealth; Liberalism seeks to raise up poverty. [Loud cheers.] Socialism would destroy private interests; Liberalism would preserve private interests in the only way in which they can be safely and justly preserved, namely, by reconciling them with public right. [Cheers.] Socialism would kill enterprise; Liberalism would rescue enterprise from the trammels of privilege and preference. [Cheers.] Socialism assails the pre-eminence of the individual; Liberalism seeks, and shall seek more in the future, to build up a minimum standard for the mass. [Cheers.] Socialism exalts the rule; Liberalism exalts the man. Socialism attacks capital; Liberalism attacks monopoly. [Cheers.] These are the great distinctions which I draw, and which, I think, you will think I am right in drawing at this election between our philosophies and our ideals.

And further:

Ah, gentlemen, I don't want to embark on bitter or harsh controversy, but I think the exalted ideal of the Socialists - a universal brotherhood, owning all things in common - is not always supported by the evidence of their practice. [Laughter.] They put before us a creed of universal self-sacrifice. They preach it in the language of spite and envy, of hatred, and all uncharitableness. [Cheers.] They tell us that we should dwell together in unity and comradeship. They are themselves split into twenty obscure factions, who hate and abuse each other more than they hate and abuse us. [Hear, hear, and laughter.] They wish to reconstruct the world. They begin by leaving out human nature. [Laughter.] Consider how barren a philosophy is the creed of absolute Collectivism. Equality of reward, irrespective of service rendered! It is expressed in other ways. You know the phrase - "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need." [Laughter.] How nice that sounds. Let me put it another way - "You shall work according to your fancy; you shall be paid according to your appetite." [Cheers.]

Strat

Re:Oh how the mighty have fallen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461979)

Just because you have an agenda doesn't mean you can just forget to do the research, idiot.

Re:Oh how the mighty have fallen (1)

Extremus (1043274) | about 2 years ago | (#41462085)

Greetings to the parallel world, stranger! Almost all technological, economic and social indexes have improved since the 90s in Brazil. The country improving dramatically, despite the left versus right babbling.

Re:Oh how the mighty have fallen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462269)

You sir, have no clue of what you're talking about.

Brazilian Nonsense (1)

lanevorockz (667614) | about 2 years ago | (#41461859)

One of the few countries where you can be arrested for doing a joke that is not funny ... in a comedy show ... Freedom of speech is not on our dictionaries and we don't fight for it .. ever

Re:Brazilian Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41461965)

I agree that arrest orders are too much (fines only would be...fine), but this kind of laws are completely sane and desirable. One could argue that they should be directed to political pr only but that's not practical and would not work, as there are always workarounds. See PAC's.

Re:Brazilian Nonsense (1)

lanevorockz (667614) | about 2 years ago | (#41462059)

Sorry about that Mr Coward but I don't believe that anyone with their right mind would ever agree with the policies we apply in Brazil.

Re:Brazilian Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41462363)

No idea about the rest of Brazils laws but Those same laws around elections exist in most countries including criminal charges for continued breach. They are considered the sane way to run a fair election to provide voters with a cooling off period prior to the election. Most countries are also incredibly strict around breaches of those laws otherwise there would be nothing to stop political groups from running roughshod over the laws.

Re:Brazilian Nonsense (1)

BadgerRush (2648589) | about 2 years ago | (#41462385)

Fines are OK in civil cases, like if someone breaks a contract or copyright infringment. The “not taking the video down” is not a civil case, it is a criminal one. Every minute Google Brasil exec's refuse to take it down they are committing an election crime, that is irreparable harm to the election process and can't be fixed by a slap in the wrist (fine).

Google Brasil's president arrest warrant was not issued because “someone uploaded a video”, it was issued because “he refused to comply with a court order to stop showing the illegal video”, that is a crime in progress.

you bey the law or suffer teh consequences (1)

thuf1rhawat (2647299) | about 2 years ago | (#41462099)

regardless of your personal opinion of a law, if you ( individually or as a corporate entity) choose to ignore that law then you accept that you may suffer the consequences. If you are making a moral stand that you beleive the law is wrong and therefore ignore it, you have no-one but yourself to blame when the law enforcement organisations or judiciary punish you in line with that. There are many laws I disagree with as an example for me as a european, Allowing people to vote before they are legally allowed to drink is assinine. However If i choose to supply alcohol to an adult under the age of 21 in teh us I have no-one but myself to blame if I end up in a shower block bending over for Bubba. Hell one of the fonding priciples of America is supposedly no taxation without representation, try cliaming that as a defence as non-us citizen working in the us for not paying tax, and see hwo quickly you lose your case for tax evasion. Regardless of your opinion of the political system of a country, the Law in a democracy ( brazil is a democracy) is the will of the people ( maybe at a slight remove due to the way representative democarcies work) and if you chose to ignore it you run the risk of puniashment.

banana (1)

jcltoday (697454) | about 2 years ago | (#41462221)

No wonder why Brazilians get offended when one points out the degree of corruption in that country; a true banana republic.

That's just silly (1)

plaukas pyragely (1630517) | about 2 years ago | (#41462295)

So there's this election law from the past. But what if someone uses email and DailyMotion to spread last hour propaganda? Shutting down individual sites is silly. Brazil should cut off the Internet or change the law instead.

Some history on Brazilian elections (0)

gelfling (6534) | about 2 years ago | (#41462313)

Brazilian politicians regularly go out in the rural areas and trade free abortions for votes. This is the saintly law abiding system they're protecting.

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