Based on a recent report published by the Associated Press, Google Inc. Brazil’s head, Fabio Jose Silva Coelho, was arrested on Thursday for several videos that were published on You Tube. The arrest triggered many debates in relation to the validity of the Brazilian laws holding You Tube responsible for the videos posted on its website.
The executive of Google Brazil was arrested on Thursday after legal experts declared that the company did not observe the judge’s order to remove several You Tube videos targeting the country’s political candidates. According to legal consultants, the judge was right to issue an arrest warrant on Fabio Jose Silva Coelho, but Google Brazil claims the company should not be held responsible for the content that is shared on its subsidiary.
Google Brazil’s representatives have stated that Brazilian laws are too rigid and further changes need to be enacted so online users could benefit of freedom of speech. In their opinion, Brazilian laws should be modified because online videos and articles should not be governed by the same laws that are used for the material published in newspapers and other traditional media.
Coelho was released from arrest a few hours later, but he will, nevertheless, return in court for his case to be trialed. The date of the first hearing has not been established yet. On Thursday evening he took to his personal blog to explain people that Google Brazil was forced to remove the respective You Tube video because the company lost its final appeal. He declared that the multinational enterprise was very disappointed by the fact that they could not defend their users’ right to post free speech videos. However, Fabio and the rest of the workers at Google Brazil promised users to continue to fight for free expression globally.
Fabio Jose Silva Coelho’s declaration was reinforced by many other legal experts in Brazil. According to them, the legal system of the country has not been adapted to information technology; as a consequence, similar cases could take place in the future because the laws do not state who should be held responsible for the published content.