Henrique Wellen is a Professor at the Department of Social Services of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte.
This translation has been automatically generated and has not been verified for accuracy.
Given its impact on various election results, there has been much discussion about the use of social media as a resource for political manipulation. In the United States, in Bulgaria, in Brazil, various analyses have appeared on the use of this form of communication to try to influence people’s thoughts and feelings. In the most recent case, that of the Brazilian elections, these investigations have also had legal consequences: some journalistic reports have shown indications not only of illegitimacy, but also of illegal uses of social media.
Some Brazilian newspapers, especially Folha de São Paulo, presented a series of reports that exposed a complex system of attempted electoral manipulation. According to these reports, a consortium of businessmen was allegedly set up and contracted virtual communication companies to send false messages, the so-called fake news. In addition to the dissemination of false messages, other illegal acts were also revealed: the purchase of contact lists and the payment of these services were not officially reported as part of the costs of the electoral campaign.
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