Pornhub limits uploads, disables downloads to keep nonconsensual videos off the site

Pornhub has announced new changes to its content policies after the New York Times  (NYT) reported that the site has done wrong by allowing uploads of nonconsensual videos that often involve “underage girls”. Pornhub has now limited uploads of videos and also disabled downloads, the company officially announced.

As reported by The Verge, Pornhub through an official statement announced “a new set of policies aimed at keeping nonconsensual videos off the site.” In simple words, Pornhub will no longer allow uploads of videos from unidentified users. This suggests that the website will now “restrict uploads to content partners and members of the platform’s Model Program”.

The report also stated that “Pornhub plans to roll out a broader verification process for regular users in 2021.” The company also announced that once content has been uploaded on the site, Pornhub will block downloading content completely.

The report further suggested that PornHub has promised to increase moderation of content on the platform through Red Team, which is dedicated to “proactively sweeping content already uploaded for potential violations and identifying any breakdowns in the moderation process.”

PornHub has also announced to publish its first transparency report in 2021, which will detail results of moderation from the previous year.

The updates to content policies come after the NYT report by Nicholas Kristof that highlighted the number of girls who appeared in videos on the platform without their consent. “Even after the videos were flagged and removed, downloaded copies continued to circulate, often with severe and alarming personal consequences.”

Reacting to the recent changes to content policies Kristof wrote in a tweet, “A great deal depends on how responsibly Pornhub implements these, and it hasn’t earned my trust at all, but these seem significant,” he wrote. “A great deal will also depend on whether past content, already on the site, is vetted or removed.”

The NYT report also pressurized Pornhub’s business partners such as Visa and Mastercard to cut ties with the platform. In line with the same, Dawn Hawkins, senior vice president and executive director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation said the site should be shut down. “Companies like Visa and MasterCard who partner with Pornhub are also profiting from the rape of children,” Hawkins said in a statement.

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