Visa, Mastercard Suspend Payments for Ad Purchases on Pornhub

Visa and Mastercard have reportedly suspended card payments for advertising on Pornhub and its parent company MindGeek following controversy over whether the adult video sites may be facilitating child pornography.

CNBC reports that Visa and Mastercard said this week that card payments for advertising on Pornhub and its parent company MindGeek will be suspended after a lawsuit sparked controversy over whether the payments giants can allow child pornography on their platforms.

A federal judge in California recently rejected Visa’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a woman who accused the payment processor of facilitating the distribution of child pornography on Pornhub and other MindGeek-owned sites. Visa CEO and Chairman Al Kelly said in a statement that the company strongly condemns sex trafficking and is confident in its position.

“Visa condemns sex trafficking, sexual exploitation and child sexual abuse,” Kelly said. “It is illegal and Visa does not allow the use of our network for illegal activity. Our rules explicitly and unequivocally prohibit using our products to pay for content that depicts non-consensual sexual behavior or child sexual abuse. We are vigilant in our efforts to deter this, and other illegal activity on our network.”

Kelly stated that the decision created uncertainty about the role of TrafficJunky, MindGeek’s advertising arm, and as a result the company will suspend its Visa acceptance privileges. Visa cards will not be able to purchase advertising on any websites affiliated with MindGeek.

“It is Visa’s policy to follow the law in all countries where we do business. We do not make moral judgments about legal purchases made by consumers, and we respect the rightful role of legislators to make decisions about what is legal and what is not, Kelly said. “Visa can only be used on MindGeek studio sites that feature adult professional actors in legal adult entertainment.”

Mastercard told CNBC that it is asking financial institutions to suspend acceptance of their products with TrafficJunky following the court ruling. “New facts from last week’s court decision alerted us to advertising revenue outside of our view that appears to provide indirect funding to Pornhub,” Mastercard said in a statement. “This step will further enforce our decision from December 2020 to end the use of our products on this site.”

Read more on CNBC here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan

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