Terrible new Brazilian Internet law proposal will criminalize brazillions of people

Pedro sez, "Brazil is about to pass possibly the strictest legislation ever regulating the internet. The bill will be voted in the next few days by the Brazilian Senate. Please see below the translation of the article published today by Folha de Sao Paulo, the largest newspaper in the country:"
According to Ronaldo Lemos, by referring to "computer networks", "communication devices" and "information systems", the draft law covers not only computers, but also MP3 players, cell phones, DVD players, software systems and even digital TV set-top boxes, not to mention websites. Following this line of reasoning, the bill would cover even the act of unblocking a cell phone.

The professors claim that no country criminalizes access to information on the Internet in such broad fashion. "The closest legislation to what is being proposed here is the one passed in the USA, which criminalizes the act of circumventing technological protection measures. But no law has criminalized access itself," mentions the brief.

Article 285-B qualifies as a crime – also punished with 1 to 3 years of imprisonment and a fine – "to obtain or transfer data or information" without prior authorization of the legitimate owner.

The professors propose the exclusion or amendment of the text of two articles of the draft law. They suggest that the access and transference of information on the Internet be considered a crime only if fraud or "unlawful advantages" are involved.

Link (Thanks, Pedro!)


  1. Summun Jus, Summa Injuria

    This is one of those stupid laws that we in Brazil say: “ela não vai pegar”. Aimed to justify the commissions (bribes) payed by recording companies to our politicians, it will be ineffective for the incapacity of local authorities in enforcing it. Nobody is really concerned with the law, since most people that would be affected are “untoucheables”. Just to give an idea, we have 190 million people, but less than 25 million pay income taxes.

    Here we have a law that says that you have to pay 3.000 the value of a pirated software if it is for personal use or much more if you redistribute it. This law is more than 10 years old. Nevertheless, you can buy pirated software in stands on the streets. Let’s say, Windows Vista for R$10,00 (that means about US$6,00). The only visible effect of the law is that some companies suborn law enforcement agents.

    Shit thing is that, after some years of stupid legislatures, it is necessary to swap government the bad way in order to prune things (like getting rid of corrupt politicians).

  2. If you are a Brazilian citizen, please let our senators know what you think:

    adelmir.santana@senador.gov.br; mercadante@senador.gov.br; alvarodias@senador.gov.br; antval@senador.gov.br; arthur.virgilio@senador.gov.br; augusto.botelho@senador.gov.br; cesarborges@senador.gov.br; cicero.lucena@senador.gov.br; cristovam@senador.gov.br; delcidio.amaral@senador.gov.br; demostenes.torres@senador.gov.br; edison.lobao@senador.gov.br; eduardo.azeredo@senador.gov.br; eduardo.suplicy@senador.gov.br; efraim.morais@senador.gov.br; eliseuresende@senador.gov.br; ecafeteira@senador.gov.br; expedito.junior@senador.gov.br; fatima.cleide@senadora.gov.br; fernando.collor@senador.gov.br; flexaribeiro@senador.gov.br; flavioarns@senador.gov.br; mozarildo@senador.gov.br; francisco.dornelles@senador.gov.br; garibaldi.alves@senador.gov.br; geraldo.mesquita@senador.gov.br; gerson.camata@senador.gov.br; gilvamborges@senador.gov.br; heraclito.fortes@senador.gov.br; ideli.salvatti@senadora.gov.br; inacioarruda@senador.gov.br; jarbas.vasconcelos@senador.gov.br; jayme.campos@senador.gov.br; joaoribeiro@senador.gov.br; papaleo@senador.gov.br; joaodurval@senador.gov.br; jtenorio@senador.gov.br; joaopedro@senador.gov.br; raimundocolombo@senador.gov.br; j.v.claudino@senador.gov.br; jonaspinheiro@senador.gov.br; jose.agripino@senador.gov.br; almeida.lima@senador.gov.br; jefperes@senador.gov.br; josenery@senador.gov.br; renan.calheiros@senador.gov.br; renatoc@senador.gov.br; sarney@senador.gov.br; jose.maranhao@senador.gov.br; katia.abreu@senadora.gov.br; leomar@senador.gov.br; lucia.vania@senadora.gov.br; magnomalta@senador.gov.br; maosanta@senador.gov.br; crivella@senador.gov.br; marco.maciel@senador.gov.br; marconi.perillo@senador.gov.br; maria.carmo@senadora.gov.br; mario.couto@senador.gov.br; marisa.serrano@senadora.gov.br; neutodeconto@senador.gov.br; osmardias@senador.gov.br; patricia@senadora.gov.br; paulo.duque@senador.gov.br; paulopaim@senador.gov.br; simon@senador.gov.br; romero.juca@senador.gov.br; romeu.tuma@senador.gov.br; rosalba.ciarlini@senadora.gov.br; roseana.sarney@senadora.gov.br; tiao.viana@senador.gov.br; siba@senador.gov.br; sergio.zambiasi@senador.gov.br; serys@senadora.gov.br; sergio.guerra@senador.gov.br; tasso.jereissati@senador.gov.br; valdir.raupp@senador.gov.br; valterpereira@senador.gov.br; wellington.salgado@senador.gov.br

  3. Does anyone know some more info about this proposal? What’s the proposal number/year and authors so we can search it in the senate website?


  4. interesting article.

    The headline use of “Brazillions” makes you come off as parochial and retarded.

    See there are “other countries” out beyond your land, populated by “foreigners”, this being so does not make them automatically wrong or less than a US American.

    See how your point has become occluded by your tawdry piss taking of people not USAsians.

    You guys really do have to dial down your casual disrepect for other nations.

  5. @Error404: (5). You don’t read BoingBoing much do you? I am one of those “foreigners” you speak of and so is Cory. He may be guilty of stretching a little too far for a pun, but the rest of your post is BS^15 power.

  6. Cory: Pro Tip: There’s already a sucessful news website that specialises in unfunny puns.

  7. ‘The headline use of “Brazillions” makes you come off as parochial and retarded.’

    Speaking of parochial and retarded, here’s the joke that came to mind with the use of the word “brazillions.”

  8. Girino, the bill is actually a bundle of these other projects: Lei da Câmara 89/2003 e Projetos de Lei do Senado n. 137/2000 e n. 76/2000.

    As for Doctorow’s pun, I really can’t see where the problem is. In fact, I tend to consider the user Error404 “parochial and retarded” for criticizing an innocent pun when we should be discussing the content of the post.

    Cory, I beg your pardon in the name of all other brazilians who have a sense of humor.

  9. @ Error404: USAsians? (I read US Asians.) I think the best (albeit silly) term is United States-ers, or just call ’em gringos, that always works and never pisses anyone off.

    On topic, this law is way too vague to be enforceable, even if most officials in Brazil were honest (most of the ones I have dealt with are not).

  10. I’m a Brazilian, and the headline use of “brazillions” makes you come off as funny. Please ignore stupid people who have no sense of humor; they make me ashamed of my country. Joke away, people, it’s the only sensible answer to stupidity like this.

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