Brazilian court demands answers from X over alleged non-compliance

In a move that underscores growing concerns over digital oversight, Brazil’s Supreme Court has issued a direct challenge to social media platform X, demanding answers regarding its alleged failure to comply with court directives.

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A Brazilian Supreme Court justice has issued an ultimatum to social media giant X, formerly known as Twitter, instructing them to clarify their apparent failure to fully comply with previous court orders. The directive comes amid an ongoing investigation initiated by Justice Alexandre de Moraes into Elon Musk, who declared his intention to reinstate accounts on X despite judicial directives to block them.

Justice Moraes, citing concerns over constitutional violations in X’s handling of Musk’s case, set a five-day deadline for the platform to respond. The inquiry was sparked by a report from federal police in Brazil, revealing active accounts on X that had been legally instructed to be blocked, contradicting the company’s claims of compliance.

According to the police report, these unblocked accounts retained the ability to attract new local followers and disseminate links for live-streaming videos, raising questions about X’s adherence to judicial orders. Moraes emphasised the urgency of the matter, urging X representatives to address the identified non-compliances detailed in the police report.

Why does it matter?

The development unfolds against a backdrop of heightened scrutiny over the role of social media platforms in Brazil’s political landscape. Moraes is spearheading investigations into the proliferation of digital disinformation and hate speech, particularly during the tenure of former President Jair Bolsonaro. X’s purported failure to adhere to court orders adds another layer of complexity to ongoing efforts to combat online misinformation and protect democratic processes in Brazil.