The world’s ninth largest economy, Brazil is a regional power as well as an emerging global power. At the same time, Brazilians experience grave human rights violations that reflect poorly on the country’s respect for civic space. Civil society complains about the unjustified use of force against demonstrators, a lack of media pluralism and widespread judicial censorship against journalists and bloggers. Brazilian civil society has a good recent track record of forcing the government to implement more protective laws, however they emphasise the need for consistent activism. Given the distance between law and actual practice, CSOs are active in monitoring implementation of laws, denouncing violations and helping to turn declared rights into reality.