Petition Calls for Shutdown of PornHub due to Trafficking Concerns

Published: 30 March 2020

Trafficking HubTraffickingHub launches petition against PornHub adult site. (Photo:

By Zdravko Ljubas

An online petition urging the US Department of Justice to shut down porn site PornHub for hosting videos of sex trafficking victims has reached on Monday nearly 600,000 signatures after the website made its premium content free during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Critics of the porn site claim that PornHub’s move is an attempt to silence complaints about videos featuring sex trafficking victims, according to Reuters.

“With nearly one billion people in lockdown across the world because of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s important that we lend a hand and provide them with an enjoyable way to pass the time,” PornHub Vice President Corey Price said in a statement.

He described the decision as PornHub’s contribution to the prevention of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying it’s “an extra incentive for people to stay home and flatten the curve.”

The site is simply trying to cash in on “this moment of global vulnerability,” according to a statement by the founders of the “TraffickingHub” petition.

“We are more committed than ever to exposing this dark mega-company that is exploiting the world’s most vulnerable women and children,” the petitioners said, adding that over the past few months the site hosted “several shocking cases of sex trafficking and child rape films.”

A 15-year-old girl who had been missing for a year was found after her mother was tipped off that she was on the site, which features 58 videos of her rape and abuse, according to TraffickingHub.

The rapist was reportedly identified and is now facing a felony charge.

The TraffickingHub campaign has inspired protests across the world and led to a cross-party letter from Canadian parliament members to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and a letter from U.S. Senator Ben Sasse to Attorney General William Barr, both calling for investigations into PornHub.

Representatives of the website, however, reject the accusations and say PornHub is “far more regulated than any other major user generated platform.”

Internet Watch Foundation (IWF), which identifies and removes child sexual abuse imagery online, reportedly said that it found 118 cases of child abuse on Pornhub from 2017-2019, but that this number was low and that Pornhub quickly removed the content.

“Everyday sites that you and I might use as social networks or other communications tools, they pose more of an issue of child sexual abuse material than Pornhub does,” IWF spokeswoman Emma Hardy told Reuters.