Dozens of women sue Pornhub, accusing the adult site of not seeking their consent before publishing explicit videos

Getty Images
Share to friends

More than 30 women have filed a lawsuit against the adult website, Pornhub, alleging exploitation for posting their explicit videos without seeking their permission.

In the lawsuit filed in California, the women also accused Mindgeek, the parent company of Pornhub of a “criminal enterprise”.

The lawyer representing the women reportedly said they are suing for damages which could amount to “hundreds of millions of dollars” if successful. He believes it is a moment of reckoning for the online porn industry.

Leigh Nicol is one of three British women involved in the case, Sky News reported. According to the media outlet, a video Nicol filmed of herself having sex aged 18 was stolen following an iCloud hack and, without her permission, posted on sites owned by MindGeek, a company believed to be worth more than £1.2bn.

“Even at this point, I look at myself in the mirror and I feel sick because that’s no longer private to me,” she said.

“Because a large part of the population has seen something that they shouldn’t have seen. There’s shame, there’s embarrassment, there’s disgust, sickness, there’s doubts that I’m not good enough.

“I feel like no one would ever potentially want to actually be my future husband, because I’ve got these videos attached to me.”

Pornhub’s content is mostly uploaded by its own community but the public can see it. However, the company has said every video uploaded is reviewed by human moderators.

Another woman in the suit told CBS she was only 17 when her boyfriend coerced her into making a nude video. The woman, who used the pseudonym Isabella, said the video was later posted on Pornhub without her consent and she only found out from a friend.

Pornhub received 42 billion website visitors in 2019, with 6.83 million videos uploaded, according to reports.

In a statement, the adult website called the allegations “utterly absurd, completely reckless and categorically false”.

The company told the BBC: “Pornhub has zero tolerance for illegal content and investigates any complaint or allegation made about content on our platforms.”

“We have the most comprehensive safeguards in user-generated platform history, which include the banning of uploads from unverified users”.

Pornhub said it “takes every complaint regarding the abuse of its platform seriously, including those of the plaintiffs in this case”.

It added that it did not intend to let the “hyperbolic language in the lawsuit distract from the fact that Pornhub has in place a safety and security policy that surpasses that of any other major platform on the internet”.

Pornhub does not require its users to verify the identity or age of those featured in its videos – nor does it seek to confirm the consent of people who appear in videos posted to the site.

The new allegations comes after a New York Times investigation in April accused Pornhub of being “infested” with child-abuse and rape-related videos claims the site denied.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

four + eleven =