Pornhub Concedes to Major Demands of Traffickinghub Movement After NY Times Exposé

Days after being exposed in a major New York Times report by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nicholas Kristof, Pornhub has conceded to making major changes to how the site operates—a significant “win” for the global Traffickinghub movement founded by Laila Mickelwait and powered by Exodus Cry.

In chorus with Kristof, Traffickinghub followers publicly demanded that Pornhub remove its infamous “download” button, and now the site has removed the feature, stating that they have “banned downloads.” Additionally, they now only allow videos to be uploaded by verified users, essentially changing the entire business model of the site in accordance with the four demands that Kristof made in his article.

Since our February 9 op-ed in the Washington Examiner, the Traffickinghub campaign has been blowing the whistle on the infestation of rape and child sexual abuse material on Pornhub. The original article, penned by Exodus Cry’s Director of Abolition, Laila Mickelwait, kicked off the Traffickinghub campaign. This unifying cause to end overt criminal sexual exploitation on the world’s largest porn site has drawn the support of over 2.1 million petition signers from 192 countries.

Fast forward to December 4, 2020, when award-winning journalist Nicholas Kristof dropped a bomb on Pornhub after months of investigations. His scathing New York Times exposé, “The Children of Pornhub” released an international media shockwave and elicited a response from high-level government officials, including Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. His article also called for action from corporations and financial institutions:

I don’t see why search engines, banks, or credit card companies should bolster a company that monetizes sexual assaults on children or unconscious women. If PayPal can suspend cooperation with Pornhub, so can American Express, Mastercard and Visa.

On December 6, Visa and Mastercard responded and are currently investigating their business relationship with Pornhub to determine whether they will remove their payment services from the site.

Our unified voices are being heard, but there is still much to be done. We need reliable implementation, apologies to victims, restitution for victims, and more.

Pornhub has proven it cannot be trusted to self-police. It has spent years knowingly making hundreds of millions of dollars on the bloody, bruised, abused, raped, and trafficked bodies of society’s most vulnerable.

Here’s what we’re continuing to call for:

Pornhub must delete all user-generated amateur videos from the site. Too many videos are blatantly illegal.

They must immediately implement third-party reliable age and consent verification using government-issued ID. Currently, no government-issued ID or real consent is needed for Pornhub “verification.” This is unacceptable.

Pornhub must apologize and provide restitution to all victims. Their lives have been destroyed by Pornhub’s predatory, criminally negligent, and intentionally reckless disregard for the safety of children and adults.

Pornhub must be investigated by the US Department of Justice and Canadian Ministry of Justice for flagrantly and knowingly violating the criminal code. The criminal justice system doesn’t allow sexual predators and traffickers to get away with a slap on the wrist and a promise of better behavior. Justice for victims means criminal prosecution and restitution—nothing less. We urge Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the US Department of Justice to act now.

Lastly, these changes must apply to ALL MindGeek owned tube sites. MindGeek currently holds a monopoly on global user-generated internet pornography and these imperative requirements must be met on all of their sites.

We are celebrating this huge milestone! But Pornhub still must pay for their years of criminal complicity and the lives they’ve ruined as a result. For that reason alone, we will continue to fight for this predatory site to be investigated, prosecuted to the full extent of the law, and for victims to receive what is due to them.

Join the Movement

One of the greatest ways you can make an impact is by joining Exodus Cry’s dedicated community of Premium Partners who are giving $10/month, or more, to sustain this long fight till Pornhub is brought to justice. Will you join Exodus Cry? Start here.

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