“At this moment, we have nobody to reach out to,” says Nina Santos, a researcher at the Brazilian National Institute of Science & Technology in Digital Democracy. “All the people that we were talking with are no longer there.” Santos says that until Musk’s takeover, Twitter had been “quite responsive” in taking down rule-breaking content that could undermine trust in the election or spread disinformation, compared to Meta and Google. The entirety of Twitter’s Brazil team was included in the 7,500 people laid off earlier this month.
Although Lula was declared the winner of the election, Santos says she still sees tweets questioning the result or calling for mobilization against the government. All of these, she says, are dangerous.