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Right before the new year, Pornhub sent out its annual Year in Review statistics. Like many of the press releases from one of the world's most popular porn platforms, it tells us just how much and what type of porn people are consuming in the company's signature quirky, lighthearted style. This year, Pornhub's Year in Review touted "celebrity porn" as one of its most popular search genres. Celebrities with some ties to sex work or famous sex tapes top the list, including Belle Delphine, Kim Kardashian, and Lena the Plug. But the rest of the top search terms are celebrities—mostly women—who've never been involved in porn, including Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Taylor Swift, and Gal Gadot. However, since Pornhub is unable or unwilling to control non-consensual pornography on its platform, searching for these names will immediately lead users to deepfake porn of these women. Ariana Grande, for example, was searched for more than 9 million times on Pornhub in , while Selena Gomez was searched for 7. As is the case for many of the celebrities on Pornhub's list, searching for these names will immediately lead users to deepfake porn videos of them, which violates Pornhub's own policy. Pornographic deepfakes of these women show up in the first pages of the results and these videos have been viewed thousands of times, according to Pornhub's own numbers. These videos are also profitable for Pornhub, since they're hosted against ads.
Org petition to close the website over sex trafficking and child rape fears has received , signatures. Women's rights group Exodus Cry, who launched the petition, say that Pornhub is a "super-predator" site and that its time to hold the website accountable for "hundreds" of alleged videos of underage sex trafficking victims that appear on the site. According to the petition, videos can be uploaded onto Pornhub too easily without proper verification and checks in place. The petition, listed on the Change. Org website, alleges: "Pornhub has no reliable system in place to verify that those in the videos it hosts are not trafficked children being raped on film in order to line the pockets of its executives. We already have evidence, and it is just the tip of the iceberg.
It helps to build the brand. And yes, it really is that bad. Videos can easily be uploaded without the consent of those featured in them, creating a MeToo scandal that most people don't want to talk about. Yet Pornnhub tries to gloss over the fact that the website profits from the commodification of human beings. Pornhub is all about monetizing sex, and the company doesn't seem to care who gets abused and broken along the way.