The Brazilian 2022 Elections and the Courts’ Fight on Disinformation in the Light of Bolsonaro’s War on Democracy

Jun. 21, 2022
2:00PM - 4:00PM
Open to the Public

Much like in the United States, Brazilian institutions have worried about digital disinformation and its impact on democratic processes for several years. In 2018, Jair Bolsonaro ran a successful far-right presidential campaign largely dependent on disinformation strategies, and under his administration, Brazil has seen rising tensions between the federal government and institutional actors. Most notably, Bolsonaro has antagonized the Supreme Federal Court and the Superior Electoral Court, which he accuses of sabotaging his presidency, persecuting him and his supporters, and conspiring to rig the coming October elections, in a rehash of the Trump 2020 campaign’s “Big Lie” claims that lead to the January 6th uprising. The President’s public dislike of these institutions seems hinging not only on his general aversion to democracy, but also on their attempts to crack down on his disinformation network and to limit the electoral uses of digital tools employed by his reelection campaign, such as large WhatsApp and Telegram groups.

Please join us for a talk about the recent experiences and current challenges of the fight on disinformation in Brazilian politics, as well as the general expectations regarding the coming elections and the state of Brazilian democracy. 


Ana Beatriz Robalinho is a JSD candidate at the Yale Law School.

Clara Iglesias Keller is a postdoctoral legal researcher at the Politics of Digitalization group at the Berlin Social Science Center and coordinator of the Digital Disinformation Hub at the Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institute.

João Pedro Salvador is lead researcher in the Center for Education and Research in Innovation at the FGV São Paulo Law School (CEPI-FGV) and holds a Master ‘degree in Criminal Law from the University of São Paulo.

Rodrigo Moura is a PhD in Political Science candidate in the University of Illinois Chicago.

Moderator:  Victor Silveira, Resident Fellow at Information Society Project at Yale Law School

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