Google to Shut Down Some Orkut Communities

On Wednesday Google announced that they will shut down some Orkut communities, after leads from the Brazilan government suggesting that some advocate violence and human rights violations.

Google met with a Brazilian human rights commission on Tuesday, where they were presented with compelling evidence that some Brazilians have been using the invite-only service to commit crimes. They will shut down any communities that violate Orkut’s terms of service, which forbid “any illegal or unauthorized” purpose. 

Nearly 8 million Brazilians are members of Orkut, representing nearly a quarter of all Brazilians with internet access.  Some Orkut communities have recently been linked to drug dealing, organized fights, and even a plot to kill the President and plant a bomb in Congress.

“Orkut does not condone any of the communities that advocate violence and are a threat to human rights,” Nicole Wong, a Google attorney, said in a statement.

Google has tentatively agreed to remove site communities from Orkut, and work with police to help identify those who posted the pages.   This is only a preliminary agreement, and a final agreement is expected in 15 days.

Under the terms of the proposed agreement, Google would hold user information for up to six months to allow for Brazilian courts to issue subpeonas, if neccessary. Google would also be required to set up a Portuguese speaking team to monitor the communities.

Google has not confirmed whether they will be handing over user data, and stated that they were still waiting on Wednesday for a list of the questionable sites.

We’ll keep an eye on this situation, and update you with all the latest information.

6 Comments

  1. DarrenDarren05-26-2006

    I’m the owner of a popular travel Orkut community, and I am amazed at the number of Brazilians using Orkut. This makes running the community difficult as many of them don’t speak English, so you don’t know what they are discussing unless you get a translator involved.

    This has meant a few of the members removed in the past due to violent discussions against other Brazilian members of the community.

  2. ROGERIO RECKELROGERIO RECKEL10-01-2006

    WELL , I AM BRAZILIAN AND I SPEAK SOME ENGLISH,THE BRAZILIAN PEOPLES LIKE TO KNOWS DIFERENT PERSONS, THEY ARE HAPPY PEOPLES ,DARREN, YOU CAN TO VISIT MY ORKUT PLACE AND I WILL EXPLAIN MORE ABOUT THE BRAZILIANS FOR YOU, OR LEAVE A MESSAGE IN MY EMAILBOX, RODALGU@HOTMAIL.COM.

  3. StickiewicketStickiewicket11-01-2006

    Any type of violation,disgrace to a particular community,country and its ideals should not be encouraged. All illegal practices in terms of trade and speculation,violence and threat to human rights should not form part of this.

  4. Jamal BajwaJamal Bajwa12-28-2006

    Well, talking about the brazilians. A person added me on orkut and he was brazilian. I knew what i had been through. Constant talking and irritating. I ain’t saying that brazilians are bad, many of them were nice to me but i like to talk to people who are close to me. Every brazilian has atleast 500 friends, and many are now sending messages which are illegal and refer to pornography. So i would like orkut to to take a serious actian on the excessive brazilian users of orkut.

  5. sebastiansebastian01-05-2007

    i there its good . google should shut down some bad communites in okut iam in full support

  6. NaveenNaveen01-18-2007

    Orkut is losing its reputation because it is not having good filters to pornography,I think they come with some idea for good user experience.

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