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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:

  1. Cope with the stresses of everyday life
  2. Cultivate healthy relationships
  3. 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):

  1. Medical treatment and expenses (past and future)
  2. Lost wages (past and future)
  3. Pain and suffering from injuries, treatment & recovery (past and future)
  4. Diminished enjoyment of life (past and future)
  5. Diminished earning capacity
  6. 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.

 
 
 
Why Choose Our Law Firm

Our law firm started handling personal injury cases in 1955. Today, we are recognized as a national leader in lawsuits involving corporations. We have received over 150 jury verdicts for $1 million or more, and have won jury verdicts and settlements in excess of $30 billion.

We are the founder of Mass Torts Made Perfect. This is a national conference attended by 1,500 lawyers each year where we teach how to successfully handle lawsuits against the largest companies in the world.

We have a long history of initiating important national cases, including those against:

  1. U.S. tobacco industry
  2. National opioid distributors
  3. Human/Sex trafficking
  4. Pharmaceutical industry for defective products
  5. Chemical manufacturers

For more information, please visit our About Us section.

 
Our Fees & Costs

Our lawyers provide free confidential case evaluations, and we never charge any fees or costs unless we first recover for you.

The contingency fee we charge ranges from 20% to 40%. The amount we charge is based on how much we recover for you. To review a summary of our fees and costs, click Fees & Costs.

 
Free Case Consultation

To contact us for a free case evaluation, you can call us at (800) 246-3031 or email us at jointhefight@levinlaw.com. You also can request an evaluation by clicking Free & Confidential MindGeek Pornhub Evaluation Form. This form will be immediately reviewed by one of our attorneys that are specifically trained to handle these sensitive requests.

 
 

MindGeek Lawsuit News

Judge Sides With Survivors of CSAM in Powerful Ruling Against Pornhub/MindGeek

A judge ruled that the the class action lawsuit Doe #1 et al v. MG Freesites LTD et al can move forward, rejecting MindGeek’s motion to dismiss the case.

DAs, Others Make Case for EARN IT Act

The National District Attorneys Association (NDAA) calls on Congress to pass the EARN IT Act with an eye toward holding the tech industry accountable for the exploitation of kids on their platforms. The bill’s goals is to clearly state there is no immunity from civil liability for posting or hosting child sexual abuse material.

Pornhub Owner Settles Lawsuit With 50 Women, Including Four Canadians

MindGeek has settled a U.S. lawsuit involving 50 women who said they had been intimidated and coerced into a large sex-trafficking operation. Plaintiffs alleged they were lied to about how sexually explicit videos of them would be used and that the materials were uploaded to the internet without their consent.

The Internet Is Overrun With Images of Child Sexual Abuse. What Went Wrong?

The New York Times investigates the epidemic of child sex abuse images that fill the internet, reporting that 3,000 online child sex abuse images were reported in 1998, compared with 100,000 only 10 years later.

 
 

Scientific Studies and Reports About CSAM

CyberTipline 2020 (NCMEC – 2020)

Rise in online enticement and other trends from exploitation reports stats from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.

Survivor’s Survey (Canadian Centre for Child Protection - 2017)

The Canadian Centre for Child Protection operates a tipline to report the online sexual exploitation and abuse of children. The organization reports that one of the most difficult aspects of having suffered sexual abuse that is recorded, uploaded, and traded online is lack of control over the ongoing sharing of their abuse images and the public accessibility of those abuse images. This report offers statistics, graphs, and tables based on an analysis of 150 victims of CSAM.

 
 

FAQs About MindGeek Pornhub Lawsuits

Q: Who will see my responses to these questions?

A: Your responses are reviewed by our trained call center staff.

Q: Who will reach out to me?

A: Our trained and trauma informed call center staff will reach out to you for further questions before sending your response to an attorney for review.

Q: Do I have to participate if I change my mind?

A: There is no obligation to participate or to sign up. You can stop the inquiry process at any time.

Q: What if I can’t find images/videos anymore but I know they were posted in the past?

A: Please provide the facts and details you have to the trained intake personnel and we will have an attorney review. You can also ask to speak to an attorney directly.

Q: What if they were posted on free sites, not paid sites?

A: The evaluation of your case does not depend on whether or not it was a free or paid website or app.

Q: If I want to press criminal charges, can I get help with that too?

A. This is a case review for civil claims. This is not a criminal report. However, our trained intake specialists and attorneys will provide you with resources you may utilize to reach out to law enforcement for an investigation.

 
 

How to Report Child Sexual Abuse Material

One challenge in stopping the spreading of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) is knowing how to preserve evidence of the crime without inadvertently becoming complicit in the crime, in the eyes of the law.

Viewing, possessing, and distributing CSAM is a federal crime and constitutes child sexual abuse. However, reporting such content in the right way plays a vital role in keeping online platforms safe, possibly leading to the identification of victims, and helping to end cycles of abuse.

The law is very strict with regard to how authorities must handle child exploitation materials. Here’s the right way to do it.

  1. Do not share the content, even if it’s to help identify a child. This serves only to further spread the abuse, deepening the cycle of trauma for victims and survivors. Also, you would be violating federal law, regardless of your good intentions.
  2. Report the CSAM to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or whatever platform hosted it.
  3. Report the CSAM to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children using their online Cyber Tipline form.
  4. Report any evidence of child sex trafficking to the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888.
  5. Save documentation of your Takedown requests.
 
 

Resources for CSAM Survivors

Call 9-1-1 - If you are in the United States and are in immediate danger: call 9-1-1

Take-Down Request Resources: Visit these websites to request removal of non-consensually shared videos and images

  1. NCOSE
  2. WithoutMyConsent
  3. LegalVoice
  4. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children CyberTipline

National Center for Missing & Exploited Children CyberTipline - NCMEC serves as the national clearinghouse for child pornography reports. To report videos of minors and other CSAM, visit this site.

RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network) - The nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization. RAINN operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800-656-HOPE).

National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) - The leading 501c(3) non-profit organization exposing the links between all forms of sexual abuse and exploitation

National Human Trafficking Hotline - Connects victims and survivors of sex and labor trafficking with services and supports to get help and stay safe. The Trafficking Hotline also receives tips about potential situations of sex and labor trafficking and facilitates reporting that information to the appropriate authorities in certain cases. 1-888-373-7888 (TTY:711; *Text 233733)

 
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