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Pornhub begins purging content

One way to describe the last week at MindGeek, parent company for the likes of Pornhub and other adult tube sites is – turbulent.

Since the publication of a New York Times exposé earlier in December, Pornhub has been doing damage control. First it restricted uploads so that only verified users could upload content to the site.

Then those verified users, many of whom are part of Pornhub’s Model Program, were dealt another blow when Visa and Mastercard announced they would no longer support payments on the website.

Now Pornhub is purging content.

“As part of our policy to ban unverified uploaders, we have now also suspended all previously uploaded content that was not created by content partners or members of the Model Program. This 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 wrote in a blog post.

The comparison to other social networks is bizarre as while those platforms aren’t perfect, the majority of users and content creators aren’t using the platform to upload pornography or graphic material. Does porn find its way onto Facebook and Twitter? Yes absolutely it does and we’d argue that controls for those firms should be tighter.

Pornhub goes on to compare itself to Facebook, stating that Facebook self-reported 84 million instances of child sexual abuse material over the last three years. By contrast Pornhub says a third party organisation, Internet Watch Foundation reported 118 incidents of child sexual abuse material on Pornhub in the same period.

That number is incredibly low, a fact Nicholas Kristof highlighted in his piece earlier in December.

“The Internet Watch Foundation couldn’t explain why its figure for Pornhub is so low. Perhaps it’s because people on Pornhub are inured to the material and unlikely to report it. But if you know what to look for, it’s possible to find hundreds of apparent child sexual abuse videos on Pornhub in 30 minutes. Pornhub has recently offered playlists with names including ‘less than 18’, ‘the best collection of young boys’ and ‘under- – age,'” Kristof wrote.

But Pornhub doesn’t seem to think it’s the big bad in this story as it highlights in its latest blog post.

“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 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. These are the same forces that have spent 50 years demonizing Playboy, the National Endowment for the Arts, sex education, LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, and even the American Library Association. Today, it happens to be Pornhub,” the adult content platform wrote.

Sorry Pornhub, but no.

This is not a conspiracy to end the porn industry. This is a matter of your firm having been found to be incredibly lax in how it enforces its own policies.

Quite frankly, Pornhub is in the stone age of the porn industry and platforms such as OnlyFans are becoming increasingly popular to the point where we have to wonder how long tube sites will be a destination for those looking to release some tension.

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