Why PornHub could use Bitcoin the way Wikileaks

Why PornHub could use Bitcoin the way Wikileaks, Venezuela and Iran did

MasterCard and Visa, and soon maybe even PayPal, have cut off their business relations with PornHub: as always, in these cases the solution is Bitcoin.

Nicholas Kristof is a journalist for the New York Times who in recent days has unearthed a huge scandal which, although it seems obvious, it is not clear why he didn’t come out sooner. The question he asked Bitcoin Optimizer is: who verifies the consent of the people filmed in the porn videos that are posted on PornHub, one of the best known and used platforms in the industry? The answer, of course, is „nobody“. And if no one checks the consent of the people involved, then no one always checks that they are actually of age and not minors and, above all, that they are not victims of rape or sexual abuse.

The NY Times found that a lot of the research carried out on this platform is on „videos with minors“ and Nicholas, with his report „The Children of PornHub“, was able to track down people who reported being abused as children in the videos that were then uploaded to the platform. The investigation went viral in a few hours. Initially, the PornHub company decided to dismiss the allegations in full, thinking it could put out the straw fire, but this is known to be the era of hyperconnection, the news runs faster than the flames. By now the story is picked up by newspapers around the world: Mindgeek, the holding company that owns the PornHub platform, decides to take a step back, apologise, urgently change the video authentication and uploading policies, suspend downloads and open an internal investigation.

Too late. MasterCard and Visa decide to seize the ball, terminate all business relations with the platform and (rightly so…) publicly condemn PornHub’s negligence and liability in this scandal. PayPal, the fourth inconvenient and cynical PayPal, is now deciding to join its two competitors and abandon the platform too. All right, you’ll say. Almost. Beware, far be it from me to justify such an abominable behaviour. On the contrary, I hope that every single person responsible for having committed those abuses will be arrested and rot in jail, and with it I hope those who uploaded those videos on the site, those who accepted and published them without checking them, those who searched, downloaded, shared and seen them and, above all, hundreds of thousands of unsuspecting people who, between one search and another, have seen these videos without denouncing them, almost taking them for granted (it is no coincidence that Dante dedicates an inner circle of Hell to them, they deserve it).

However, this medal also has another face

Yes, because everything I have written above is my very personal opinion, and it must remain so. I am not authorised to condemn before a trial or to decide, instead of a judge, what is right or what is wrong. I can do it yes, but only morally. On the other hand, a few hours ago, those who control the biggest payment circuits in the world decided to end with a click the possibility for millions of people (even honest ones) to pay and use (mostly legal) services from a private company (not yet convicted). This is also abominable. And it affects 3.5 billion people. Because many are the users of the PornHub platform who are now prevented from using „their“ money as they wish.

And this is happening all too often lately, isn’t it? Do you know on what other occasions this has happened? In 2011, a man named Julian Assange viralized a free and independent platform around the world that can bring out secrets, scandals, crimes and abuses committed by government entities around the world. Even then Mastercard, Visa and PayPal decided to suspend payments to millions of free citizens who until then really believed that the money they had in the bank really belonged to them. Well, Assange was forced to urgently search for a new payment system that was truly free, independent and decentralized and found the perfect solution in Bitcoin, which was almost unknown at the time. It was June 14, 2011, the value of a bitcoin was about 15€. „The eye of the storm“ and the media coverage that Wikileaks gave Bitcoin in those years certainly contributed to its discovery and diffusion.