After Twitter, Facebook removes Bolsonaro videos for ‘misinformation’

Sao Paulo, Brazil, Mar 30 (efe-epa).- Facebook followed in the footsteps of Twitter on Monday by removing video posts in which the president of Brazil challenged the isolation measures defended by the health authorities to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement, the company founded by Mark Zuckerberg reported that it decided to delete the posts, shared to both Facebook and Instagram, because its policy does not allow “misinformation that could lead to physical harm.”

In the videos, 65-year-old Jair Bolsonaro was seen talking to a street vendor in Taguatinga, one of the satellite cities of the capital Brasilia, despite the restrictions imposed by various Brazilian states to stop the spread of COVID-19, which has already left 159 dead and 4,579 confirmed cases in Brazil.

“What I have been hearing from people is that they want to work. What I have said from the beginning is that ‘we are going to be careful, the over-65s stay at home,'” said Bolsonaro, one of the most skeptical about the severity of the pandemic and a supporter of the end of social isolation.

He also told people that chloroquine, a medicine used against malaria and other diseases, “is working everywhere,” even though its effectiveness against coronavirus has not yet been scientifically proven.

“We remove content on Facebook and Instagram that violates our Community Standards, which do not allow misinformation that could lead to physical harm,” the company said in the statement.

Facebook, which owns Instagram, has announced various initiatives to contribute to the fight against the coronavirus, including measures to curb misinformation and “false news” and increase the dissemination of the recommendations of the World Health Organization.

The Menlo Park-based company made the decision to remove Bolsonaro’s video just a day after Twitter, which removed two because they “violated the Twitter Rules.”

In a statement sent to local media, Twitter said it had recently included among its criteria for excluding tweets, content that contradicted public health information from official sources and could put people at greater risk of transmitting COVID-19. EFE-EPA


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