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The Brazilian Supreme Court rules that there is no right to be forgotten in Brazil.

The Brazilian Supreme Court denied the Extraordinary Appeal (RE) 1010606, filed by the Aida Curi’s relatives in light of a ruling by the Rio de Janeiro’s Court of Appeals (TJRJ). TJRJ had decided that, by exhibiting the Linha Direta program about the brutal crime of which Aída Curi was a victim, TV Globo fulfilled its social purpose of informing, alerting, and opening the debate about the case, and would not have the obligation to indemnify the relatives for the unauthorized use of the victim’s image.   

Excluding Justice Edson Fachin (and Luis Roberto Barroso, who has not decided on the case), all other Justices understood that the right to be forgotten, generically and abstractly, is not compatible with the principles and values outlined in the Brazilian Federal Constitution, especially when considering the freedom of speech and information. The indemnification request for emotional distress was also denied, and only Justices Nunes Marques and Gilmar Mendes voted in favor of it. 

In order to consolidate the court´s understanding, the following statement was approved: “The idea of a right to be forgotten is incompatible with the Constitution, which is understood as a power to prevent, due to the passage of time, the disclosure of truthful and lawfully obtained facts or data published in both digital and analog media. Any excess or abuse in the exercise of freedom of speech and information must be analyzed on a case-by-case basis, considering the constitutional parameters, especially those related to the protection of honor, image, privacy, and personality in general, and the express and specific legal provisions in the criminal and civil spheres.” 

Since the RE was judged recognizing the general repercussion, this ruling will bind and be applied to similar cases.

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