Tech

Porn site XTube is shutting down as parent MindGeek faces lawsuit

In brief: XTube, one of the first adult site to allow users to upload and share pornographic videos, is shutting down on September 5, thirteen years after it was founded. While no reason for the closure has been given, it’s speculated that the legal problems faced by parent MindGeek influenced the decision.

Pornhub and its parent MindGeek have been embroiled in controversy since a damning New York Times report last December alleged the site was profiting from non-consensual videos, including those showing rape and child abuse. It led to the site stopping unverified uploads, Mastercard and Visa cutting ties with MindGeek, and Pornhub later added new safety measures that include verification by a third-party company for uploads.

Last month saw thirty-four women sue MindGeek for allegedly being “one of the largest human trafficking ventures in the world,” and “likely the largest non-regulatory repository of child pornography in North America.” The civil complaint claims it is a classic criminal enterprise run “just like the Sopranos.”

As reported by TNW, XTube’s announcement that it will shutter on September 5 makes no reference as to why. A likely reason is that it is hosting illegal, user-uploaded content, and closing the site is easier than facing another lawsuit. Laila Mickelwait, founder of the #Traffickinghub anti-trafficking and sexual abuse movement, believes this to be the case.

MindGeek owns dozens of porn websites, including Pornhub, RedTube, Tube8, and YouPorn, along with adult production companies and brands. It brings in 3.5 billion views per month. A recent survey showed PornHub was one of the most popular ways people in the UK got through last year’s lockdown.



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