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Pornhub Execs Face Allegations of ‘Monetizing Rape, Child Abuse, and Trafficked Content’

Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm via Unsplash

Pornhub Execs Face Allegations of ‘Monetizing Rape, Child Abuse, and Trafficked Content’

By Movieguide® Staff

After Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nicholas Kristof released a groundbreaking expose on Pornhub’s exploitation of children in 2020, the adult entertainment site suffered an avalanche of amendments and destabilizing changes. In 2021, company executives appeared in court. 

The world’s largest adult-entertainment company MindGeek, which runs Pornhub, testified virtually to the Canadian ethics committee after allegations that they profited from sex trafficking and the abuse and rape of minors.

According to CTV News Montreal, David Marmorstein Tassillo and Feras Antoon fielded questions from the House of Commons after Serena Fleites requested that Pornhub remove a naked video of her, recorded when she was in seventh grade.

Fleites claimed she contacted the company—even impersonating her mother—to have the video taken down.  

Fleites testified that it was a week before Pornhub responded to her request and weeks more before it the company removed the video. However, the video reappeared on the platform.

Arnold Viersen, a member of Parliament (MP) in Alberta, said: “It should not be up to children and victims to request to have their content removed.”

Attorney Michael Bowe, who testified with Fleites, claims the accounts from unconsenting adults and children are rampant.  

“Everyone can agree that a company should not be commercializing and monetizing rape, child abuse, and trafficked content,” Bowe said.

Tassillo claimed that Pornhub requires all content to undergo “several filters” before being released for viewers.

Allegedly, the company hires moderators to examine and delete illegal material. A job which one such moderator called “soul-destroying.” 

“You (MindGeek) are not protecting our Canadian teenagers who get caught in this situation where their lives are turned upside down,” Quebec MP Jacques Gourde pressed. “If you have just a modicum of ethics, use it.”

Tassillo maintained that Pornhub is “the safest adult platform in the world right now.”

Ontario MP Charlie Angus said that the site could face criminal charges and up to 14 years in prison for distributing child pornography. 

“At any point, when you were promoting these links of 12-year-olds and runaway teens, was your conversation that you were actually breaking Canadian law?” Angus questioned. “The issue that we’re talking about here is criminal behavior – the criminal code – your obligations to protect people.”

Related Reading: Porn Victims File $40 Million Lawsuit Against Pornhub, MindGeek

The Canadian Centre for Child Protection also released a statement. Executive Director for C3P Lianna McDonald said:

“Let’s not lose sight of the core problem that led to this moment. When we don’t regulate spaces, especially those involving explicit adult content, the most vulnerable among us – children, teenagers, and adults – inevitably suffer. We do not accept this standard in other forms of media – including television, radio, and print. We should not accept it, as our inaction collectively has, in the digital space.”

Movieguide® previously reported on the work of Exodus Cry and Christians’ role in the fight against sex trafficking, child pornography, and media:

This is not a new idea, nor has it gone unnoticed by organizations who actively fight against it, such as Exodus Cry—an international non-profit fighting human trafficking. But the report is a major victory in bringing this issue to the attention of the mainstream media.

Movieguide® emphasizes the importance of media discernment, and this is one step in the right direction. However, there is always more work to be done.

An incorrect view of love, sex and relationship is not only portrayed in the bowels of sex industry companies like Pornhub. Many movies, TV shows and video games—that corporations pawn off as “normal” for children and young adults—are also engrained with similar vices.

Related Reading: Pornhub Removes 10 Million-Plus Videos After Scathing NYT Rebuke