Censorship

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Censorship
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Brazil is a South American country which practices Christianity.

Censorship was pervasive during the presidence of Getulio Vargas, as well as during the military regime between 1964 and 1985.

General censorship[]

  • During the military regime, a set of laws known as Institutional Act Number 5 or AI-5 stated that "the preliminary censorship of music, films, theater and television (a work could be censored if it was understood as subverting the political and moral values) and the censorship of the press and of other means of mass communication". Under that legislation, TV shows, films and even theatre plays had to issue a certificate of approval (known also as "Censura Federal", Federal Censorship) before their exhibition, and then re-examination is obligatory; scenes can be cut; films can be declared inappropriate for exhibition to those under 10, 14, or 18 years of age, or inappropriate for exhibition in certain parts of the country, or inappropriate for export, or simply inapproriate for exhibition, in which case all existing copies of the film shall be confiscated. The law also continues the tradition of treating censorship and commercial control as one single legislative area.
  • In 1997, a law forbidding "to use trickery, montage, or other audio or video feature that, in any way, degrade or ridicule a candidate, party or coalition, or to produce or display program with that purpose" three months before a political election was created. In 2010, the Brazilian Association of Radio and TV and humorists questioned this law, and the Supreme Federal Court (STF) suspended its effect.
  • Since 1989 "Anti-racism law" bans promotion of Nazi ideals and the use of Nazi symbols, as well as incitement to discrimination or prejudice based on race, ethnicity, religion, and national origin.

Book censorship[]

  • In 2019, the mayor of Rio de Janeiro ordered the ban of Young Avengers: The Children's Crusade from the Riocentro Bienal do Livro, Brazil’s most important literary event, due to the gay romance between Hulking and Wiccan. However, this backfired and caused the comic to sell out before any of the authorities could take it.

TV censorship[]

The Brazilian advisory rating (Portuguese: Classificação Indicativa, abbreviated ClassInd) is a content rating system for the classification of movies, games and television programs in Brazil. The ClassInd rating system is controlled by the Advisory Rating Coordination (Coordenação de Classificação Indicativa) of the Department of Justice Politics (Departamento de Políticas de Justiça). It is established on the National Secretariat of Justice (Secretaria Nacional de Justiça) of the Ministry of Justice. The criteria that guide the public policy of the content rating are supported under 3 broad themes—sex, drugs, and violence—content considered inappropriate to the upbringing of children and adolescents. The analysis is made counterbalancing the frequency, relevance, context, intensity and importance to the plot of scenes, dialogues and images containing violence, drug use and sex/nudity. This margin of subjectivity ensures flexibilities that are critical to the process and the rating result. The analyses consist of three steps: factual description, thematic description and age grading. When the process is finished, it is subjected to the coordination, and finally to the director of the department, who makes the order for publication on the Brazilian Official Journal, along with small content descriptors. The criteria for rating the works were developed taking into account national and international studies and public hearings in all regions across Brazil, including public debates, both face-to-face and online.

Aiming to provide an instrument for the choice of the family, the Practical Guide was created, which claims to bring transparency and objectivity to the public policy of the content rating, showing detailed analysis criteria, subdivided by age groups. They can serve broadcasters, producers and distributors of movies and games and also families and society in general.

The objectivity of the analysis departs from moral considerations and moralistic views. The Ministry of Justice specifically cited that sexual orientation does not aggravate the rating and that, in fact, showing material of respect and encouragement to diversity can attenuate the rating. They also specified that their job is to give an advisory rating for parents, therefore, they do not have any legal right to ban, demand cuts or refuse to rate any work.

People under the minimum age indicated by the rating can watch the movie and/or TV program only if accompanied by their parents (the accompanying guardian must be of 18 years of age or older), except for 18-rated movies on the cinemas. Films for cinema and DVD/Blu-ray releases are previously rated by the ClassInd. TV programs are rated by their own broadcasters and therefore the rating can be accepted or denied if considered inappropriate.

There are also operational descriptions of attenuating and aggravating elements, such as scene composition, relevance, frequency, motivation, among others, that can interfere on the final rating.

  • L - Livre (General Audiences): This Rating is suitable for all audiences:
Violence: Fantasy violence; display of arms with no violence; deaths with no violence; bones and skeletons with no violence.
Sex and Nudity: Non-erotic nudity.
Drugs: Moderate or suggestive use of legal drugs.
  • 10 - Não recomendado para menores de dez anos (Not recommended for minors under ten): The following contents are accepted for this age range:
Violence: Display of arms with violence; fear/tension; distress; bones and skeletons with signs of violent acts; criminal acts without violence; derogatory language.
Sex and Nudity: Educational contents about sex.
Drugs: References to the use of legal drugs; discussion on the issue "drug trafficking"; medicinal use of illegal drugs.
  • 12 - Não recomendado para menores de doze anos (Not recommended for minors under twelve): The following contents are accepted for this age range:
Violence: Violent act; body injury; violence references; sight of blood; victim's pain; natural or accidental death with violence; violent act against animals; exposure to danger; showing people in embarrassing or degrading situations; verbal aggression; obscenity; bullying; corpses; sexual harassment; overvaluation of the physical beauty; overvaluation of consumption.
Sex and Nudity: Veiled nudity; sexual innuendo; sexual fondling; masturbation; coarse language; sex references; sex simulation; sexual appeal.
Drugs: Use of legal drugs; inducing the use of legal drugs; medication misuse; illegal drugs references.
  • 14 - Não recomendado para menores de quatorze anos (Not recommended for minors under fourteen): The following contents are accepted for this age range:
Violence: Intentional death; social stigma/prejudice.
Sex and Nudity: Moderated nudity; erotization; crude language; sexual intercourse; prostitution.
Drugs: Suggestive use of illegal drugs; references to the use or trafficking of illegal drugs; discussion on the "decriminalization of illegal drugs".
  • 16 - Não recomendado para menores de dezesseis anos (Not recommended for minors under sixteen): The following contents are accepted for this age range:
Violence: Rape; sexual exploitation; sexual coercion; torture; mutilation; suicide; gratuitous violence/trivialization of violence; abortion, death penalty, euthanasia.
Sex and Nudity: Total nudity; intense sexual intercourse.
Drugs: Production or trafficking of any illegal drug; use of illegal drugs; inducing the use of illegal drugs.
  • 18 - Não recomendado para menores de dezoito anos (Not recommended for minors under eighteen): The following contents are accepted for this age range:
Violence: Apology to violence; Cruelty; Child abuse, any violence involving minors.
Sex and Nudity: Explicit sex; Complex/strong impact sexual situation.
Drugs: Apology to the use of illegal drugs.

Information on the rating system includes content descriptors which are a summary of the main rating indicators inserted in the work rated. The list of descriptors explains the rating system and also informs parents and guardians about the type of content that the work contains. For instance, a work rated as "10 years old" and with the descriptor "Violence" will contain light violent scenes, while a work rated as "16 years old" and the same descriptor will show stronger violent scenes. Below is a list of the twelve terms used in the rating system:

  1. Violência (Violence);
  2. Violência Extrema (Extreme Violence);
  3. Conteúdo Sexual (Sexual Content);
  4. Nudez (Nudity);
  5. Sexo (Sex);
  6. Sexo Explícito (Explicit Sex);
  7. Drogas (Drugs);
  8. Drogas Lícitas (Legal Drugs);
  9. Drogas Ilícitas (Illegal Drugs);
  10. Linguagem Imprópria (Inappropriate Language);
  11. Atos Criminosos (Criminal Acts);
  12. Conteúdo Impactante (Shocking Content).


In order to request a Qualification Rating, one will have to provide a documentation (in a Portuguese-language form) which explains why a media (game/TV show, etc.) is recommended or not to a certain rating. A preview of that media is also compulsory to avoid mistakes during media verification.

The document will have to be sent to the Department of Justice, Rating, Titles and Qualification. There's no fee to get the rating and the process from the documents reception to the official rating can take about 20 days.


  • The Simpsons - the season 13 episode "Blame It on Lisa" was only shown three times in Brazil before public outcry (in particular, from Riotur and the Rio de Janeiro tourism board) led the government to ban it. Several scenes mercilessly made fun of the country — multicolored rats running through the slums, an old peddler distracts Homer while her children pick his pocket, and Bart watches a Brazilian kids' show with a lot of sexual innuendo and scantily-clad actresses. It would be years before FOX was allowed to show the episode again and include it on the season 13 DVD box set there.

Telenovelas[]

Various telenovelas (soap operas) were censored for different reasons ranging from moralism to ideological control. Rede Globo, the largest telenovela producer of the country, is known to have practiced self-censorship on at least two occasions.

  • Brega & Chique - the opening credits of this 1987 Rede Globo telenovela caused polemic as a naked man with his exposed buttocks could be seen. The general rating asked that the man to be veiled, and Rede Globo put a leaf over the model's buttocks, due to the conservative viewers' protests. After this, new pro-nudity protests and accusations of censorship aimed at the network, arose. Then, the Minister of Justice (at the time was Paulo Brossard) approved the original opening. Notwithstanding, this censorship still remained on its Vale a Pena Ver de Novo rerun.
  • Certification of broadcasting approval, with caveats, fort the telenovela Roque Santeiro, 1985. Document under custody of the National Archives of Brazil.

    Roque Santeiro - this 1985 Rede Globo telenovela had three final sequences shot: In two of them, the protagonist Porcina (Regina Duarte) ended up with white characters (Lima Duarte or José Wilker) and in the other, she ended up with Tony Tornado's black character Rodésio. Globo's press office, however, reported that just two final sequences had been shot; with Porcina ending up with one of the white characters. According to Tony Tornado in the 2000 documentary A Negação do Brasil, the third sequence was banned by the head of the network.
  • Bandeira 2 - this 1971 Rede Globo telenovela had the censors demanding that the author Dias Gomes killed off Tucão (the character played by Paulo Gracindo), a gambling boss who controlled the north side of Rio de Janeiro, under the "good always triumphs over evil" argument.
  • Anjo Mau - this 1976 Rede Globo telenovela, had its ending with the nanny Nice, played by Susana Vieira, dying after giving birth, which went against the wishes of the author Cassiano Gabus Mendes, who wanted that the character ended happy at the side of Rodrigo, portrayed by José Wilker. This was an imposition of the censors, with the same argument regarding the death of the Bandeira 2 character.
  • Fogo sobre Terra - this 1974 Rede Globo telenovela was the one which suffered most censorship from the military government. Originally written in 1973, the plot was approved for broadcast in the following year. As it was airing at a time when the government was planning the building of the Itaipu Dam, the media watchdogs feared that the telenovela generated a popular revolt against the dam's building. For this, they requested that the writer did not kill off the protagonist Pedro Azulão (who was originally going do die by drowning in the last chapter) so that he would not become an anti-Itaipu martyr. Moreover, the plot's protagonist was seen with bad eyes by the censors, as he represented a sort of revolutionary leader. Due to the fact that at the time, the military had fears of any popular revolt, the character Pedro Azulão (portrayed by Juca de Oliveira) who was seen as a community leader was seen as a bad example. In retaliation to this, the censors behested some changes in the character's attitude, resulting in the screenwriter Janete Clair rewriting various scenes, besides arguing with the government so that the scenes were approved for airing.
  • O Marajá - This 1993 Rede Manchete telenovela about former president of Brazil Fernando Collor during his tenure as President. However, Collor himself filed a lawsuit and for this reason the telenovela was not aired.
  • Amor e Revolução - This 2011 SBT telenovela based on the military regime years. A few weeks before its debut, there were petitions by conservative groups to prevent that the telenovela would not be aired, due to its exposition of the military regime. However, the actors mobilizated themselves against the process and the telenovela's airing was given a green light.
  • Poder Paralelo - This 2009 Rede Record telenovela was pulled off air from the network, which was criticised for doing so. The head of the network, Edir Macedo (who also is the chief of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God), vetoed author Lauro César Muniz, who claimed to have left Globo due to the lack of artistic freedom, and director Ignácio Coqueiro from writing and directing scenes which featured thighs, breasts, buttocks and coarse language. Although Macedo claimed the scenes were being cut so that the program be rated 14, scenes containing deep violence were not removed, resulted in bad reviews for the network, already known for its aestheticization of violence.

Anime[]

While not banned, anime as a whole are under demonization from Evangelical groups, as well from some parents groups. In 2003, during Rede Bandeirantes show Boa Noite Brasil, Gilberto Barros, trying to look for polemic and easy audience, accused Yu-Gi-Oh of "promoting occultism" and extended criticism to other anime, to the point of showing on his program a scene from a Dragon Ball Z movie, as if it was a bad influence for children (coincidentally, at that time, Globo acquired the rights of Dragon Ball Z from its previous broadcaster, Bandeirantes). Years later, on October 2021, RecordTV show Domingo Espetacular's reportage about "children being exposed to violent media" singled out Death Note as "negatively influencing children and teenagers", although the reportage did not say that anime such as this were not meant for said demographic[1][2].

  • Saint Seiya - Some violent scenes (as said by the head of Rede Manchete's cinema division Eduardo Miranda, "They put me to sit to watch a 15-minute trailer of the show. The video was exactly like this: blood, violence, suicide attempt, autoflagellation, a guy pummeling his eyes...[3]"), such as the scene in the first episode, where Cassios bleeds after Seiya slashes his ear, for instance, were cut during the anime's debut on Rede Manchete in 1994. When Rede Bandeirantes bought the rights of the anime in 2004, the Ministry of Justice rated the anime to be shown only after 9:00PM (which made it unwatchable). The network, then, made it air at the end of afternoon by "commiting theirselves to cut some violent scenes". However, as recounted by a fansite, Bandeirantes relented by leaving aside said commitment by showing the episodes in uncut form. Rede Brasil also aired this anime uncut.
  • YuYu Hakusho - when this anime aired in Brazil in 1996, Manchete took the care to edit the fighting scenes against Kazemaru in order to not show the Manji symbol (a sideways swastika-like Buddhist symbol) on his forehead.
  • Rurouni Kenshin - when Rede Globo aired this anime in 1999, many violent scenes were cut so much that the plots sometimes were made by a patchwork of three different episodes. However, when it aired on Cartoon Network, it was shown uncut.
  • Power Stone - when Rede Globo aired this anime (based on the video game of the same name), it got pulled out as it was considered "too violent for the kids' timeslot", as well for the presence of an androgynous character called Kikunojo (Ayame's cross-dressing older brother), which had effeminate mannerisms. Later, in 2002, the anime had a quick broadcast on Rede Globo, with one of the 26 episodes being cut in order to make the series end on a Friday (as TV Globinho, the kids programmation block where the anime aired, did not air at weekends).
  • Crayon Shin-Chan - when this anime originally aired on Fox Kids (with a censored version, imported from the United States), it was pulled off the air through a decree issued by the then-Mayor of Rio de Janeiro César Maia[4], which deemed it "not suitable for the target audience" (even if it aired at 10:00PM). However, when the anime aired in 2005 on Animax, it was shown uncut.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! - This anime was shown in its 4Kids version on Rede Globo. However, while the series was successful in Brazil, Most fundamentalist Evangelical pastors started to preach that Yu-Gi-Oh! presented a Satanic deck to children. In the early 2000s, TV host Gilberto Barros described Yu-Gi-Oh as "the devil's deck", which prompted parents to burn or throw away their sons' cards[5]. After this built up polemic, this resulted in censorship and Globo did not air further seasons of the anime. Years later, RedeTV! bought the rights to broadcast Yu-Gi-Oh! GX without any problem.
  • Inuyasha - While this anime was aired by Rede Globo, only 26 episodes were shown with several cuts (even more than the version edited for broadcasting outside Japan), after the difficulties of the network of trying to air the anime made headlines, as due to its slight violence, it could not be aired before 9:00 Pm (which is the watershed in Brazil), as airing in that network would mean having the series banned from the network (which only broadcasts animation at morning)[6]. When the anime was aired by Cartoon Network, it did not had the same issues.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist - When aired on RedeTV! in 2006, this anime had some scenes cut to tone down the violence in order to be aired. It ws aired uncut on Animax.
  • Naruto - This anime, which aired on SBT in 2007 (5 years after the statement from Mauro Lissoni, the network's programming director who stated that anime would never be included in the programming for being "too much violent"[7]), it had various scenes deemed as violent or controversial (such as when Naruto uses his Oiroke no Jutsu technique or the scene where he kisses Sasuke) cut and the deaths of characters were toned down.

Variety shows[]

  • Cocktail - this SBT gameshow (adapted from the Italian gameshow Colpo Grosso) hosted by Luis Carlos Miele, which aired between 1991 and 1992 did not had its last three episodes (out of its overall 55) aired, having only a year of existence due to criticism from conservative and religious groups, as well from the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro, for its depictions of nudity in a timeslot where underaged viewers were still awake (the program was intended for an adult audience). During its last episode, on 13 August 1992, which was an anniversary special of the show, was displayed the following message, which translated as "The Cocktail show was much more than a sequence of successful TV shows: the nudity of our girls and the boldness of our images washed the soul of those who know the times where they lived and escape from false moralism."

In the early 2000s, when the Workers' Party politician Orlando Fantazzini (who was at the time president of the Chamber of Deputies and of the Human Rights and Minorities Commission) a campaign called Quem Financia a Baixaria é Contra a Cidadania (Who Backes Vulgarity is Against the Citizens), which was critical about the quality of television shows in Brazil, inviting viewers to denounce shows that supposedly violated human rights, divulgating a ranking (named Ranking da Baixaria na TV) with the most denounced shows and the companies which backed these. While the campaign had a certain political support, it was accused of defending censorship. Among the shows targeted by said campaign were:

  • Se Liga Bocão - this police journalism show which aired from 2006 to 2014 on Aratu TV and then, on RecordTV Bahia (Record's affiliated network in Bahia), was targeted for "inciting violence, disrespect to the human person and sensationalism". The show was discontinued due to a similar police show, Balanço Geral having more credibility with the state of Bahia viewers.
  • Eu Vi na TV - this RedeTV! variety show aired between 1999 and 2005 presented by the controversial host João Kléber (who is practically, a Brazilian Jerry Springer), was on the crosshairs of the campaign because it was deemed "inappropriate timeslot, suspects of fraud and exposition of people to ridicule", possibly due to the controversy around its various hidden camera pranks and the Teste de Fidelidade ([Marital] Fidelity Test) segment, where a spouse was "tested" while being seduced by an actor or an actress, while the other spouse (who requested the test) sees through a hidden camera what happens between the two, being criticised for stimulating violence against women, as fights between the "tested" husbands and their wives were shown live in the show. The show ended on November 2005, after the network abode the decision of the Ministry of Justice by not showing anymore these hidden camera pranks and the "test" and firing the host.
  • Hora da Verdade - this tabloid talk-show aired on Bandeirantes between 2001 and 2004 and hosted by Marcia Goldschmidt, was targeted by the campaign for "sexual appeal, inciting violence, exposition of people to ridicule and discrimination" as it presented family and marital conflicts of the guests. After complaints and outcry from the viewers, as well as denounces of staged cases, Bandeirantes cancelled the show. The host left the show to focus herself exclusively on her other show, Jogo da Vida, The show was still on air, with only the segments Desabafo and O Real e o Sobrenatural. The last time Hora da Verdade aired was on 13 February 2004.
  • Tarde Quente - this RedeTV! variety talk show, also hosted by João Kléber, between 2004 and 2005 was also targeted for its hidden camera pranks that were deemed by those critical of the program as "ridicularizing homosexuals, elderly people, women and handicapped people", especially after the host was accused by the Public Ministry of discrimination and violation of human rights, asking his shows were adapted for political correctness (asking the network to remove the offending shows in 60 days and replace them with shows considered educative), after the program was taken out and the broadcaster experienced a signal cut, RedeTV! returned to its operations, sacked João Kléber and his two shows were removed and replaced with Direitos de Resposta.
  • Naked and Funny - this Ukranian show aired on SBT between 2009 and 2010 was targeted by the campaign for "scenes of nudity, erotism, grotesque humor and exposition to ridicule". The show was originally broadcasted at 22:00, but after complaints it was shifted to 23:00, losing audience. On 30 May 2010, the show was later replaced with the talk show De Frente com Gabi.
  • Casseta e Planeta: Urgente - this slapstick satirical show which aired on Rede Globo was also targeted for "discrimination" (for having a politically incorrect humor) and for "ridicularization of the human person". One of the comedians of the show, Marcelo Madureira alleged that Globo, under influence of the then-president Lula (who became paranoid about "Pro-coup Press Party", after most politicians of his government and party were accused of corruption in 2006), wanted to censor the show as the party which then was in power, the left-wing Worker's Party, was one of the targets of the show's satire[8].
  • Jogo Aberto - this sports show aired by Bandeirantes since 2007 was on the target of the campaign as it was deemed as "disrespectful to football fans groups, inciting violence and inappropriate language for the timeslot".
  • Terceiro Tempo - this sports debate show aired by Bandeirantes was on the target of the campaign for reason unknown.
  • Domingão do Faustão - this Rede Globo sunday variety show which aired between 1989 and 2021, was on the target of the campaign for perceived "sexual appeal, incitement to violence, exposition of people to ridicule and discrimination", due to the host's comments and the background dancers.
  • Superpop - this RedeTV! variety show running since 1999 was on the campaign's crosshairs on the grounds of "showing diverse scenes of sensual models, sexual appeal, inappropriate vocabulary for its timeslot, exposition of people to ridicule and vulgarization of human relations" due to the topics and interviews tackled on the show, as well for the background dancers.
  • A Fazenda - the third season of this reality show (based on The Farm format), aired on Rede Record in 2010, was lambasted by the campaign as "containing sexual appeal, coarse language and excessive nudity".
  • Boa Noite Brasil - this Bandeirantes night-time variety show aired between 2003 and 2007, hosted by Gilberto Barros, was criticized by the campaign as "being inappropriate for its timeslot and using sexual appeal". The show was pulled out of broadcast, alongside another Barros-hosted variety show Sabadaço, which was lambasted by the campaign for the same reasons.
  • Pra Valer - this Bandeirantes variety show aimed at the female public and hosted by Claudele Troiano, which aired between 2005 and 2007, was the target of criticism from the campaign for "religious discrimination and showing violence against animals". The show was scrapped from Bandeirantes due to a reformulation on its programmation schedule, rescinding the contract with Claudele, who sued the network.
  • Casos de Família - this SBT talk show which aired between 2004 and 2020 and discussed everyday problems which involved couples, families and neighbours, was criticised by the campaign for "being aired on inappropriate timeslot and for ridicularizing citizens". On 2020, the show was retired from the programming due to the variety show Triturando having its airtime stretched.
  • Brasil Urgente - this Bandeirantes police journalism show airing since 2001, was subject to criticism from the campaign after its host, José Luis Datena, who after commenting two extreme cases of murder shown previously in the show, associated atheism with criminality by accusing those who do not believed in God were responsible for the degrading of society. As a result, on 31 January 2013, the network was sentenced by order of the Ministry of Justice to air a message promoting religious diversity for the same timespan of the host's comments, that is, 60 seconds.
  • Big Brother Brasil - this Rede Globo reality show was targeted by the campaign. Many critical of the show lambast it presumibly for its exploitation of sensuality and for being "non-educational", as well as being deemed as "teaching that fame justifies any sort of humiliation and the connivence of adults in front of children teach to the latter that the "circus" of exposition leads to being a "somebody" in life".
  • Cidade Alerta - this RecordTV police journalism show was accused by the campaign of presenting sensasionalistic informations and violating human rights by interviewing suspects and criminals, who according the accusations, are obligated to answer to the interviews, as well of "inciting violence, exploitation of human beings and airing on inappropriate timeslot", which led to the first phase of the show ending in 2005. However, the show revived in 2012.
  • Programa do Ratinho - this SBT variety show, hosted by Carlos Massa (mostly known by his nickname "Ratinho"), which mixed journalism with polemic subjects, promotion of relatives who did not see eachother since decades and Maury Povich Show-style DNA paternity tests, was criticised by the campaign for "exposing people to ridicule, disrespecting Afro-Brazilian religions, moral and ethic family values and inciting violence".
  • Celebridade - this 2003 Rede Globo telenovela was accused by the campaign of "appealing to sexuality, inciting violence, as well being on an inappropriate airtime". The cuts this telenovela's chapters suffered were a factor of its audience decline.
  • Verdade do Povo - this Rede Record show aired between 2003 and 2004, hosted by the late Wagner Montes, which told real stories and personal dramas, interviewed the persons involved and offered solutions to these issues, although not being targeted by Fantazzini's campaign, was taken off air due to "sensationalistic content".
  • Na Mira - this TV Aratu, and later, Rede Brasil Bahia, police journalism show was bad-mouthed by the campaign on the grounds of "sensationalism, apology for violence and disrespect toward the human person", as well for showing violent content (real-life footage of people being arrested and tortured, bleeding corpses and murders) during watershed, which made that the show being suspended at behest of the Public Ministry of Bahia.

Movie censorship[]

  • Beyond Citizen Kane - this documentary created by Simon Hartog which criticized Brazilian media corporation Globo, which even compared Globo's owner with the fictional Charles Foster Kane, was banned by the Brazilian government. Globo has been accused of pressuring the government to ban it. The only way to really see it was to be a member of a university club which had a pirated copy — until the Internet made it to Brazil, at which point the controversy had shed enough light on media ethics that Globo's reputation had somewhat improved in the meantime. On 20 August 2009, the newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported that RecordTV bought the broadcasting rights to the documentary, after a series of mutual attacks between Globo and RecordTV because of an investigation conducted by the Public Ministry against members of Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, founded by Edir Macedo, who is also owner of RecordTV.
  • The Great Dictator - this film was banned until 1946 by the government of Getulio Vargas for being "communist" and for "demoralizing the Armed Forces".
  • El Justicero - this film starring José Wilker was banned in 1969 for criticising the military regime. The original 35mm film was seized by the authorities and later destroyed. For this reason, the movie was considered a lost film until 2017, when a 16mm copy was restored and re-released in DVD in Brazil.
  • A Clockwork Orange - this film banned by the military dictatorship for obscenity and "promiscuous content". A censored version with black polka dots covering the breasts and genitals of the actors in the nude scenes became available in the country in 1978, the same year when the AI-5 was repealed by president Ernesto Geisel.
  • Last Tango in Paris - this film was banned by the military regime due to containing obscene scenes that were considered by the government as an "attempt against morality and good habits". The ban was rescinded in 1979.
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre - banned by the military government for containing violent scenes that were considered by the government as an "attempt against morality and good habits". The ban was lifted in the early 1980s.
  • Iracema: Uma Transa Amazonica - this movie was banned due to its explicit sexual content. However, the ban was lifted in 1980.
  • Di Cavalcanti - this biopic was banned after a court decision obtained by the foster daughter of the painter Di Cavalcanti, Elizabeth di Cavalcanti, alleging that her father's image was violated due to the film containing scenes from the painter's funeral and burial. In 2004, the family members of director Glauber Rocha made the work available in full version on a server outside Brazil, in order to circumvent the film's ban.
  • Pra Frente, Brasil - this 1982 film was banned for featuring political criticism of the military regime. A year later, the ban was rescinded.
  • Hail Mary - this film was banned in 1986 during José Sarney's government due to containing blasphemy against the Christian faith. The ban was lifted after the new Brazilian Costitution was promulgated in 1988.
  • A Serbian Film - banned for being "apology for pedophilia" and for extreme violence.
  • Love Strange Love - this erotic drama film, which starred Xuxa Meneghel before she became a famous children presenter, caused controversy due to her character having a relationship with a 12-year-old boy (played by Marcelo Ribeiro). As there weren't image approvals for video content, Xuxa, through a preliminary injunction, had all its original VHS tapes from video rentals and video stores in the country collected, while 4.000 copies were sold before the Judiciary banned its distribution, with many pirated copies still circulating, making the film a real leged among those who did not knew about the work. Even today, this movie has its sale and distribution forbidden through a court decision in Brazil. However, the film was released on DVD in the United States in 2005 and could be sold by any Brazilian national in foreign sites through imports. The American producer did not sold the rights to Xuxa, who filed a lawsuit in the United States in 1993, but lost. Years after, in 2010, she asked that Google to unconcile her name from pornography and pedophilia, asking that the service removed any link of pages that showed her naked or in sex scenes in photos or videos. According to the Brazilian Superior Court of Justice (STJ) decision, it was ruled that Google should not suppress the results, as it is not responsible for the publishing of the contents, but a mere search tool.

Internet censorship[]

In 2003, former senator Eduardo Azeredo (PSDB-MG) proposed the revision of the Bill 84/1999 (known as Digital AI5, or simply as "Azeredo Law") to veto digital crimes. The bill was intensely criticized by net users, as they would have the obligation to report every possible illegal activity and would responsibilize the user for vehiculating these contents, be of their authorship or not. The bad drafting of the bill gave the understanding that a CD recorded even if with the possession of the original would consist an offense, due to criticism of approval of the project was delayed for an indeterminated time.The main criticism to the bill is grounded in the comparison with the models SOPA in the United States and ACTA in Europe, where in both cases, the government could block the access to every site that led the user to potentially illegal content and forcing every net user to sign in.

On 22 de September 2008, PSDB-MG tried to censor a documentary hosted on YouTube, which deals with censorship: "Gagged in Brazil", by Daniel Florencio. The short talks about the manipulation of the press and the medias in the Minas Gerais state, here only the news favorable to the government were published. In this way, some journalists of the state press expose this reality by being censored for criticising the then-state governor Aécio Neves or simply forced to omit information about this government.

  • In 2006, YouTube was blocked in Brazil after a lawsuit from model and MTV VJ Daniela Cicarelli and her boyfriend because there was a video taken by paparazzi showing the couple making out in a Spanish beach, which did not contained sexual content. The lawsuit asked that YouTube be blocked in Brazil until all copies of the video were removed. On 6 January 2007, a legal injunction ordered that filters be put in place to prevent users in Brazil from accessing the website.

The effectiveness of the measure was questioned, as the video was available also on other sites as part of an Internet phenomenon. On Tuesday, January 9, 2007, the same court overturned its previous decision, allowing the filters to be removed. The video footage itself remained banned and was to be removed from the website.

  • A regional judge ordered all telephone operators in Brazil to block WhatsApp, the most popular messaging app in the country, for failing to turn over data as part of an ongoing drug trafficking investigation. The block was lifted some days after.


Video game censorship[]

Before the 90s, video games were not permitted for import into Brazil and were then heavily taxed as non-essential goods.

  • While some video games are nominally banned, banning videogames there iis useless n practice, due to two factors:
    • Piracy being rampant in the country, as video games in Brazil are subject to a 120% Tax on Industrialized Products (IPI) due of a law which classified any game as gambling (which is being reduced from 40% to 30% by the government of President Jair Bolsonaro[9]).
    • Most of these bans are judicial orders, nearly impossible to enforce, with limited jurisdiction, and in some cases, unconstitutional. That did not stop them from trying, though.
  • Grand Theft Auto - this game was banned in 1997 for glamorizing car theft.
  • Carmageddon - banned in 1998 for glamorizing vehicular homicide.
  • Duke Nukem 3D - banned in 1999 because of a shootout at a São Paulo movie theater during a which closely resembled its the first level. The perpetrator said that he was inspired by said game. Doom, Mortal Kombat, Requiem Avenging Angel, Blood, and Postal were banned at that same time to prevent widespread violence.
  • Counter-Strike - temporarily banned due to a mod map called "Rio", loosely modelled after Rio de Janeiro. Authorities claimed that the map was part of the story and involved the player, with a team of drug dealers, holding UN peacekeepers hostage and shooting Brazilian military police, iignores the fact that:
    • The map is not part of the game at all, but rather an unofficial third-party created mod, not controlled by the game;
    • The player can play as either side
    • The "drug dealers" are actually international terrorists, and the "military police" is some generic counter-terrorist force. When the government realized this a year later (due to public outcry), it rescinded the ban.
  • EverQuest - this game was banned as the censors stated that "the player can make morally ambiguous decisions, and thus the game is harmful to the consumer's mental health.”
  • Bully - banned due to its depiction of school violence. This was the only ban to be actually enforced, as it wasn't sold by Steam in Brazil. However, the ban was lifted in 2016
  • The Cat in the Hat - this game based on the 2003 film was banned in Brazil because of copyright issues regarding the film.

References[]

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