Credit Card Company, Canada Respond to Pornhub Claims

The move comes after a scathing 'New York Times' column
By Luke Roney,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 6, 2020 3:26 PM CST
Mastercard: We Might 'Take Action' on Pornhub Claims
Stock image.   (Getty Images)

Looks like Mastercard isn't just letting the Pornhub allegations slide. Days after New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof leveled accusations against the adult website—citing its alleged revenge pornography, child abuse, and footage of women being asphyxiated—Mastercard says it is investigating, Reuters reports. "If the claims are substantiated, we will take immediate action," Mastercard said. The credit card company's review of its ties with Pornhub parent the Canadian company MindGeek followed a Saturday tweet from investor Bill Ackman calling for MasterCard, Visa, and American Express to "withhold payments or withdraw" until concerns raised in Kristof's column are addressed. Amex isn't accepted on Pornhub and Visa is yet to respond, Bloomberg notes.

Meanwhile, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his government is working with authorities to investigate the Pornhub claims. But CNN reports that Pornhub is denying claims about child sexual-abuse material and calls Kristof's assertions "irresponsible and flagrantly untrue. People's preconceived notions of Pornhub's values and processes often differ from reality." Pornhub says it has a team of human moderators that reviews "every single upload" and has automated systems to detect illegal content, per Reuters, which notes that the site did not say how many moderators it has. In his column, Kristof claimed that a site moderator said MindGeek has only 80 moderators worldwide. By comparison, Facebook has roughly 15,000. (More Pornhub stories.)

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