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Pornhub just removed millions of videos in a purge of ‘unverified content’

Lily Wakefield December 14, 2020
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Pornhub

Pornhub. (Miguel Candela/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty)

More than half of all videos on Pornhub have been removed, after the platform changed its policy to ban unverified uploaders.

In an announcement on Monday (14 December), Pornhub said: “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.”

On Sunday evening, according to Vice, the number of videos on the site was slashed from 13.5 million to only 4.7 million. As of Monday afternoon, the figure stood at 2.9 million.

The content purge took place after multiple hits to the company last week. On Monday (7 December) a New York Times piece was published which followed victims of child sex abuse whose videos had been uploaded to Pornhub. This was followed by the announcement of an investigation by Visa and Mastercard into illegal content on the platform.

But Tuesday, Pornhub had changed its policy to only allow verified uploaders and ramp up its moderation efforts, but on Thursday, Visa and Mastercard said they would no longer be processing payments on the site.

However, in its announcement, Pornhub said it was being “targeted” by those who want to outlaw porn altogether.

It said: “Over the last three years, Facebook self-reported 84 million instances of child sexual abuse material. During that same period, the independent, third-party Internet Watch Foundation reported 118 incidents on Pornhub. That is still 118 too many, which is why we are committed to taking every necessary action.

“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 organisations 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 demonising 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 National Center on Sexual Exploitation is a Christian organisation formerly known as Morality in Media. The organisation’s president, Robert Peters, previously linked same-sex marriage to mass murder. 

After the 2009 Binghamton shootings in New York, Peters said gay rights were “inversely proportional to the decline in morality; and it is the decline of morality (and the faith that so often under girds it) that is the underlying cause of our modern day epidemic of mass murders”.

Peters also, in 2010, compared sex toys to a “slow-moving cancer”.

Exodus Cry is an anti-porn evangelical Christian organisation, and an International House of Prayer ministry, which believes marriage is strictly between a man and a woman.

In the 2013 documentary God Loves Uganda, International House of Prayer evangelicals was, in part, linked to inflaming anti-LGBT+ sentiment in Uganda.

The organisation was co-founded by Lou Engle, who is fiercely anti-LGBT+, and is fond of recounting “visions” and “dreams” he has had.

In one post on his website he says: “We received a dream in which twin tornadoes had come to destroy America.

“Each tornado had the letters ‘HA HA’ written across it. We knew that the ‘H’ stood for homosexuality and the ‘A’ for abortion. These principalities were mocking spirits that had to be overcome in order to turn the nation.”

Related topics: Exodus Cry, National Center on Sexual Exploitation, pornhub

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