Front Burner

The problems with Pornhub

Massive shifts are rocking one of the world's most popular porn sites, Montreal-based Pornhub. Today, why porn performers say they need to be part of that conversation.
As calls to reform Pornhub grow louder, porn performers say they need to be part of the conversation. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Pornhub, the Montreal-based streaming giant, is in trouble. They've dumped millions of videos from their platform, Visa and Mastercard have cut ties with the company, and they're facing questions from Canadian MPs. This all happened after a recent New York Times article which exposed the platform's insidious problem of hosting videos of rape, child abuse and sex trafficking — sometimes even after victims asked for the videos to be taken down.

But porn performers say that while they also want to fight abuse and non-consensual content on the platform, they're now becoming collateral damage in the rush to tackle this serious issue  — and that could affect their livelihoods and safety.

Today, we're speaking to Melissa Gira Grant, a staff writer at The New Republic and the author of Playing the Whore: The Work of Sex Work, about the changes shaking one of the world's biggest porn sites, and why sex workers say they need to be included in the conversation.