Just Saw A Racist Facebook Comment On A Billboard? Don’t Be Surprised

In an attempt to curb racial abuse of any kind on social media, this group in Brazil takes a unique approach to give trolls a taste of their own medicine.

Billboards in Brazil

People’s nasty Facebook and Twitter comments are now ending up on billboards in Brazil for everyone to see.

The people with the campaign called "Virtual racism, real consequences" collect comments from Facebook and Twitter and use geolocation tools to find out where the people are who have posted them. They then buy billboard space nearby and post the comments in huge letters, although names and photos are pixilated.

This drive is backed by Criola, a civil rights organization, run by Afro-Brazilian women.

Criola's founder Jurema Werneck says the campaign is intended to encourage people to speak out and report racism. "Those people who post abuse online think they can sit in the comfort of their homes and do whatever they want on the internet. We don't let that happen. They can't hide from us, we will find them."

The campaign spurred from an ugly incident after a black weather presenter, Maria Julia Coutinho, became the target of racist remarks when her photo was posted on Facebook.

While public shaming of trolls is considered an extreme step by many, Werneck says she has received mostly positive response, including many from non-black Brazilians.

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