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Google told to pull bar mitzvah boy’s video

Nissim Ourfali’s parents slammed for showcasing their son’s upper-middle-class life, putting him in danger of kidnapping

RIO DE JANEIRO — A court in Sao Paulo state ordered Google Brasil to remove from the Internet all links to a video about Nissim Ourfali’s bar mitzvah, which went viral with over three million views years ago.

In 2012, the Ourfali parents put together the three-minute video of their son Nissim lip synching to a parody of a teen pop music hit in which he talks about his life and his joy about becoming a bar mitzvah. The video went viral, exposing Ourfali’s upper-middle-class life to the world. His parents were slammed for overexposing their child to the danger of kidnapping in their violent country.

“In a few minutes, it went viral. It was totally unexpected. We don’t YouTube our videos, the families do so,” said producer Noemy Lobel, who led the creation of the video, during an online interview with the Jovem Pan news service. “The funnier you look and the more foolish you are, the better, that’s what I tell my clients.”

The boy’s parents removed the original video, but copies are still circulating. They later sued to have it removed from the Google-owned YouTube.

Visibly very shy, Ourfali appears in the three-minute video singing a Portuguese-language parody version of “What makes you beautiful,” by British boy band One Direction, gesticulating with his arms and dancing. “I am Nissim Ourfali” and “This is my bar mitzvah” are two of the song’s lines. Behind flows a sequence of photo montages of him, his parents and siblings, along with photos of the family’s trips around the world.

The video has been widely mocked, while dozens of covers, memes and animated gifs have been created and spread across the web. There is also a Tumblr page where people can upload their own version of the scene when Ourfali sings “The best part is when we go to the whale” — meaning Brazil’s Whale Beach — and a surreal montage of the boy on top of a killer whale appears.

Months after the video was posted, a judge ordered some websites to remove it. In 2014, the ruling was dropped after determining it would be impossible to completely remove the video from the Internet. The judge reprimanded the boy’s parents for not posting the footage in a private mode.

The current removal order is a victory for the family. Today, an online search for Ourfali’s name yields 7,650 results.

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