Meme hu­mor helps Brazil­ians cope with grim times

Manila Times - - OPINION - AFP

SAO PAULO: Po­lit­i­cal cor­rup­tion, eco­nomic cri­sis, ram­pant crime -- the head­lines in Brazil are grim, so lo­cals have taken to on­line memes that of­ten go vi­ral to re­lieve the stress.

spread on­line -- mak­ing light of the the in­ter­net by storm in a coun­try num­ber of Face­book users.

One pop­u­lar meme has tour - the deeply un­pop­u­lar pres­i­dent

the na­tional foot­ball team, be­ing pro­claimed pres­i­dent.

San­dro San­fe­lice says that the meme creators are like the orches­tra - ing even as the coun­try sinks un­der

works for a phone com­pany in the mil­lion fol­low­ers on his spe­cialty Face­book page Cap­inare­mos.

He claims that some of his memes

news in Brazil, San­fe­lice last year cre­ated “Cap­ina Meme Fac­tory,” a closed Face­book page that gath­ers meme pro­duc­ers.

Any mem­ber can pro­pose a eth­i­cal stan­dards and seems funny, mod­er­a­tors will pub­lish it.

Once in cy­berspace, the meme, like a pass­ing comet, will likely have a bright but limited life­span.

- com­ing memes al­most in­stantly, from some­thing ba­nal to the elec­toral court de­ci­sion” that re wrong­do­ing, said San­fe­lice.

me­dia group O Globo pub­lished dis­cussing a hush money pay­ment to a jailed politi­cian.

in ev­ery way pos­si­ble -- as well as pic­tures of his po­lit­i­cal neme­ses, for­mer leftist pres­i­dents Luiz Ina­cio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rouss­eff, laugh­ing up­roar­i­ously -- spread

Pres­i­den­tial warn­ing

Not every­one was amused, ap­par­ently.

A few days later, the meme creators re­ceived an email from the pres­i­dency “telling us that the of be used for any pur­pose other than jour­nal­ism,” San­fe­lice said.

pause, but the hu­morists de­cided nev­er­the­less to con­tinue pub­lish­ing

email stat­ing that the mes­sage was a re­minder that they needed prior for com­mer­cial pur­poses.

For Vik­tor Cha­gas, a pro­fes­sor at the Univer­si­dad Fed­eral Flu­mi­nense in Rio de Janeiro, the mes­sage was clear.

“Politi­cians are not ac­cus­tomed to los­ing con­trol over their im­age. With the in­ter­net to hap­pen, and that wor­ries them,” said Cha­gas, a spe­cial­ist on the news me­dia.

Cha­gas, along with a group of stu­dents and pro­fes­sors, cre­ated a project ded­i­cated to the study and ar­chiv­ing of this new form

“We can­not look at this phe­nom­e­non only from the point of view of fake news or post-truth, as if all this con­tent de­serves to be dis­carded,” Cha­gas said.

“Peo­ple are gain­ing ac­cess to a de­bate that they pre­vi­ously did not have, and that is also trans­form­ing so­cial re­al­ity,” he said.

Brazil­ian hu­mor fo­cuses on tear­ing down the pow­er­ful, with a heavy dash of self-par­ody, Cha­gas said.

Truth trumps fic­tion

For hu­mor that is more re­al­i­ty­based, Face­book users can turn Brazil that ac­tu­ally works).

Ciro Ha­men, fo­cuses on the quirky, hard to be­lieve and out­landish.

- for a shoot­ing to end, or a video clip of a wo­man who cries out pres­i­den­tial palace.

- lion fol­low­ers.

“Of­ten we re­ceive con­tent that - men told AFP.

“Here, truth can be much cra­zier

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