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Most Rio de Janeiro Residents Received Fake News about Marielle Franco, but Did Not Believe It

03/26/2018 - 10h21

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LUIZA FRANCO
FROM RIO DE JANEIRO
JÚLIA BARBON
FROM SÃO PAULO

The fake news widely exchanged on mobile phone message apps and social networks on City Councilor Marielle Franco (PSOL), 38, shot dead on March 14, reached most residents of the city of Rio de Janeiro. However, a Datafolha survey carried out recently in the city in a partnership with the Brazilian Forum on Social Security shows that most of them realized it was not true.

Datafolha asked Rio residents if they were aware of the following five statements: "Marielle Franco was married to drug lord Marcinho VP", "Marielle defended criminals," "Marielle was involved with major criminal gangs," "Marielle was elected by Comando Vermelho, one of the biggest gangs in Rio," and "Marielle helped the families of police officers killed."

Danilo Verpa/Folhapress
Portrait of councilwoman Marielle Franco in Sao Paulo
Portrait of councilwoman Marielle Franco in Sao Paulo

Most people read or watched something related to the first four statements, which contained fictional content. The majority of those interviewed said that they did not believe these messages were true.

The only true statement of the five in the questionnaire was the last ("Marielle helped the families of police officers killed") and it was the one that reached the least people. Forty percent said that they were aware of the fact – of these, 27% said they believed it was true, while 8% said it was another piece of fake news.

On Thursday, March 22, Rio de Janeiro courts ordered Google to take down 16 Youtube videos which contained offensive messages against Marielle, or it would have to pay fines of R$ 1,000 (US$ 303) per day. The lawsuit was filed at the request of Marielle's sister, Anielle Silva dos Reis Barboza, and Mônica Azeredo Benício, Marielle's girlfriend.

Translated by THOMAS MUELLO

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