MindGeek & Pornhub Lawsuits – Child Sex Abuse Material

The MindGeek – Pornhub lawsuits claim MindGeek and Pornhub allow sexually explicit images and videos of children to be posted to their websites. Often, these images and videos are later shared across additional platforms, and requests from the child, their parents, and caregivers to remove the content are ignored.

Our law firm is in active litigation against MindGeek and Pornhub for posting child sexual abuse material and failing to promptly remove it when asked.

We have been handling lawsuits against the largest companies in the world since 1955. We are listed in the National Trial Lawyers Hall of Fame and the Best Lawyers in America. Our firm also launched Mass Torts Made Perfect, an annual conference where more than 1,500 attorneys learn from our lawyers how to successfully handle these types of cases.

What Do We Know About the MindGeek and Pornhub Lawsuits?

MindGeek Pornhub Lawsuit

Pornhub is one of several companies owned and operated by MindGeek. It is one of the most visited websites in the world.

MindGeek has claimed that it enforces vetting policies to ensure that pornographic content posted to Pornhub and its other websites does not feature minors and that anyone who appears in uploaded videos has consented to the content being shared in this manner. However, when the parents of a girl who had been missing for almost a year found fifty-eight videos of their daughter on Pornhub and other internet sites, MindGeek’s vetting policy came under scrutiny.

Recently, two women filed a lawsuit against MindGeek in Alabama federal court alleging that Pornhub had hosted videos of the women being sexually assaulted as teens. The videos were posted without their consent, according to the complaint. Furthermore, the women state that their rapists had shared the money made from the videos with Pornhub.

The federal judge handling the case denied MindGeek’s attempt to dismiss the lawsuit. “We are encouraged by the Court’s order,” Levin Papantonio Rafferty partner Kim Adams stated in a February 2022 press release.

The Allegations Against MindGeek

Plaintiffs identified as Jane Doe #1 and Jane Doe #2 accused the Defendants of “violating federal sex trafficking and child pornography laws by owning, operating, controlling, and profiting from websites that provide public video platforms to share and view illegal child pornography.”

The Complaint alleges that the Defendants own and operate multiple pornographic websites. One of the most popular of these sites, Pornhub, generated more traffic than Amazon and Netflix in 2019. The subjects of some videos involve children being raped or assaulted. The order cites the example of one case in which the mother of a 15-year-old girl who had been missing for a year spotted her daughter in fifty-eight videos on the website.

Although in 2020, the Defendants handed over more than 4,000 videos to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Plaintiffs say the Defendants underreported instances of child sexual abuse material (CSAM).

Plaintiffs also allege the Defendants have catered to and profited from the demand for CSAM by using tags and search engine optimization strategies with keywords like “crying teen,” “abused teen,” and “middle school girls.” Not only do the Defendants profit from partnerships with sex traffickers, the Plaintiffs allege, but the companies also monetize user data, further boosting profits from the illicit trade.

The MindGeek Operation

MindGeek owns several online platforms, including Pornhub, RedTube, YouPorn, and Brazzers. A June 2022 article in The New Yorker states that traffic to these websites reached around 4.5 billion visits per month in 2020. The article also reveals the names of MindGeek’s owners and investors as:

According to The New Yorker, around 50% of the company’s revenue hails from ads on its websites. Other income comes in the form of the porn sites’ user fees, as well as commissions from profit-sharing agreements with content producers.

Early on, the linchpin of MindGeek’s profitable operation was their use of software that uses cookies-type technology to track the success of ads. The company’s take-down request process has proved futile for some who have reported going through it, only to have the disputed content resurface within hours. With ad spaces being sold against video content, there has been little incentive for MindGeek to remove material even when requested to do so by a non-consenting subject.

In 2020, MindGeek handed over more than 13,000 videos of suspected child-sexual-abuse material after registering with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC).

Injuries & Side Effects of Child Sexual Abuse Material

According to research published by the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, recording the sexual abuse of a child has a “significant, lifelong impact on the victim.” Not only does the victim struggle with knowing that a recording of the abuse exists, but they also worry about the fact that the recording is available for viewing by the public.

The impact endures throughout adulthood, affecting the victim in their ability to:

  • Cope with the stresses of everyday life
  • Cultivate healthy relationships
  • Attain their full educational and occupational potential

What Compensation Is Recoverable in a MindGeek and Pornhub Lawsuit?

The amounts that claimants can receive in these lawsuits depend on multiple factors, including the type and extent of injuries. Generally, this type of action seeks several types of recoverable damages, including (but not limited to):

  • Medical treatment and expenses (past and future)
  • Lost wages (past and future)
  • Pain and suffering from injuries, treatment & recovery (past and future)
  • Diminished enjoyment of life (past and future)
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Possible punitive damages

Our trained team of trauma informed attorneys will work to recover the maximum financial compensation for your losses stemming from being a victim of sexual exploitation (or CSAM) while a minor, whether or not you suffered your injuries as a minor or as an adult.