With only 24% of Brazilians trusting their government, consumer rights advocacy group Reclame Aqui Institute is partnering with Grey Brasil to introduce the Color of Corruption (Vigie Aqui in Portuguese) platform to monitor and expose politicians engaged in alleged wrongdoing.
Through a Chrome plug-in that is compatible with every Web site and social media network, the program lets users float a computer mouse over a politician’s name in any news article, Tweet, Facebook post or other written content. If a politician is facing legal issues, his or her name is highlighted in purple and their respective legal backgrounds will appear as pop-ups.
The platform defines "corrupt" as any politician mentioned, investigated or convicted in any of Brazil’s legal courts, which includes the Superior Court of Justice, Supreme Federal Court and the Regional Federal Courts.
"Color of Corruption facilitates the public’s access to information by shining a light—or giving color—to corruption and illegal activities of non-compliance to the law by political officials," the firms said in a joint statement.
Brazil's Catholic Pontificia University of Paraná (PUCPR) has signed on as Color of Corruption’s main research partner to maintain the database and provide research behind each politician’s legal background. PUCPR students are invited to participate in the program as volunteers, with the work they perform counted as course credit.
“This project not only educates Brazilian college students, but also promotes the practice of citizenship,” stated Waldemiro Gremski, Dean, PUCPR. “Political awareness is a very important step for these young people to truly see themselves as citizens and to understand the impact of their social choices.”
The platform's online database currently monitors 594 politicians within the Federal Legislature, including all senators and federal deputies with more to be added over time. The program's goal is to monitor 100% of the country’s 70,430 political officials by 2020.
Reclame Aqui is also engaged in conversations with potential partners in other countries in a bid to export the corruption monitoring platform to other regions.