Pornhub removes all uploaded content from unverified users


Pornhub, a website owned by Montreal-based company Mindgeek, said Monday it has removed all uploaded content not created by verified users.

The move comes as the site deals with the fallout from a recent New York Times report that Pornhub hosts videos of child sexual assaults and exploitations. Opinion columnist Nicholas Kristof wrote that the site carried revenge pornography and explicit video taken without consent of the participants.

That led credit card companies Visa and MasterCard to announce on Friday that they would no longer allow their cards to be used on the Pornhub site. MasterCard said its move was permanent, while Visa said it was suspending activity while it performs its own investigation.

Published reports on Monday suggested the number of videos on Pornhub had dropped from 13.5 million on Sunday to about 4.7 million by Monday morning.

In a statement, Pornhub said the removal of the videos “means every piece of Pornhub content is from verified uploaders, a requirement that platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Snapchat and Twitter have yet to institute.”

Pornhub said the third-party Internet Watch Foundation reported 118 incidents of child sexual abuse material on the company’s site over the past three years, adding that Facebook self-reported 84 million instances over the same time frame.

“It is clear that Pornhub is being targeted not because of our policies and how we compare to our peers, but because we are an adult content platform,” the company said.

“The two groups that have spearheaded the campaign against our company are the National Center on Sexual Exploitation (formerly known as Morality in Media) and Exodus Cry/TraffickingHub. These are organizations dedicated to abolishing pornography, banning material they claim is obscene and shutting down commercial sex work.”

On Dec. 8, Pornhub blocked unverified users from uploading new content to the site.

One of the most visited porn sites, Pornhub gets about 100 million daily visits. Its owner, Mindgeek, owns more than 100 websites, production companies and brands.

Read more at CBC.ca