Brazilian gov’t, Google team up to filter hate speech

Brazilian gov’t, Google team up to filter hate speech

Thursday, May 25th 2023 – 10:25 UTC

A game for players to act as slave owners, which has been taken offline, triggered the Brazilian government’s response

Brazil’s Ministry of Racial Equality (MIR) and Google will develop a filter to prevent hate speech, intolerance, and racism to be disseminated through the internet, Agencia Brasil reported.

The South American country’s authorities contacted the internet giant after becoming aware of a video game available through the multinational technology company’s app store in which the user acted as a “slave owner.”

In Slavery Simulator, the player was encouraged to make a “profit” and hire guards to avoid rebellions. There was even an option for the user to sexually exploit the people placed under his power within the virtual world. The game, which was taken offline, showed images of people in chains, including a black man, who appeared covered in shackles.

“The MIR also informs that it already has a meeting scheduled with Google’s area of responsibility to build a moderation of anti-racist content, as it has done with other big techs [large technology companies] for the construction of a safe and healthy environment on the Internet,” the agency said in a statement.

In addition, the MIR will seek accountability from the game’s developers. “The Public Ministry will also be triggered to act in the case so that the parties involved in the development and commercialization of the product are also held accountable,” the statement adds.

Google said in a statement that it removed the game from its app store and that it was taking steps to curb incitement to hatred and violence. “We have a robust set of policies aimed at keeping users safe that must be followed by all developers. We do not allow apps that promote violence or incite hatred against individuals or groups based on race or ethnic origin, or that depict or promote gratuitous violence or other dangerous activities,” the company’s note stresses.

The multinational technology company says it is alert to reports of inappropriate content. “Anyone who believes they have found an app that is at odds with our rules can make a report. When we identify a policy violation, we take appropriate action.”

(Source: Agencia Brasil)


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