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Daily Dashboard | WhatsApp utilized in mass messaging for political advertising in Brazil Related reading: Book review: 'The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power'


A BBC investigation uncovered that, in order to garner political support for various parties and candidates, political campaigners in Brazil utilized scraping software to collect contact details from Facebook and then bulk message citizens through WhatsApp. While the practice is not limited to politics, it violated Facebook’s rules and could potentially constitute an electoral crime. A statement from WhatsApp said the company has taken immediate legal action to prevent companies from sending bulk messages, and Brazil’s Electoral Court said, "there is no specific electoral legislation for WhatsApp" or similar apps, but added that Brazil’s law does cover electoral advertising on the internet. Brazil saw far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro win the recent election, bringing an end to one of the most "polarizing and violent political campaigns" in the country’s history, according to CNN.
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