“Nobody gave a sh*t”
[MONTREAL — September 20]
Sound Investigations releases PART 2 of its undercover footage of MindGeek employees. MindGeek, currently rebranding to Aylo, is the porn giant most known for its most trafficked tubesite, Pornhub. Dillon Rice, a senior scriptwriter for many of MindGeek’s studios and sites such as TransAngels, and Mike Farley, one of Pornhub’s first employees and a current Pornhub product manager, detail MindGeek’s moderation failures that have allowed nonconsensual content to spread on Pornhub, from not having enough content reviewers to fake IDs.
Rice: “The system is so slow and they don’t have enough moderators that it stays up for long enough that people can get mad and sue them, and I think that’s what happens.”
Rice: “How do you get somebody to prove that they’re above age because if they can get a fake ID.”
Farley: “We don’t have consent of that person, and we’re running ads. As a business, we’re monetizing content that we don’t know where this comes from, we don’t know who is on that video, we don’t know the age of the person on that video… So, we weren’t very compliant.”
Rice: “You also have this entire division of paysites that are professional studios. We have all our legal paperwork, 2257s… Just use that content. But they [Pornhub] don’t want to. It’s competition.”
Rice: “They made so much money, and they were like top of the world, but they fumbled so hard because they didn’t take any of that money and reinvest it into moderation or like quality of the site. They just kind of gave it all to executives, and then they just made a shit ton of profit.”
Journalist: “Do you think that [The New York Times editorial scandal] would ever happen again?”
Farley: “Yes, it could. Why not?”
Journalist: “Aren’t you guys covered now?”
Farley: “Yeah, for the most part. But not 100%.”
Journalist: “But, why?”
Farley: “Why what?”
Journalist: “Why not 100%?”
Farley: “I don’t know. Because there’s always things. Because of the nature of our industry. We could never be covered 100%.”
Journalist: “Because of like the loophole?”
In December 2020, Nicholas Kristof published an editorial in The New York Times that caused such scandal for Pornhub that the Canadian government responded and victims of sexual crimes filed lawsuits against Pornhub’s giant parent company, MindGeek, now rebranding as Aylo.
While MindGeek fights these lawsuits, two MindGeek employees detail to Sound Investigations’ undercover reporter MindGeek’s negligence and lack of content moderation over Pornhub’s history and then MindGeek’s response to scrutiny after the New York Times piece.
Pornhub product manager Mike Farley admits on undercover camera that, when sex crime victims asked Pornhub to take down nonconsensual videos, Pornhub wasn’t “taking it seriously,” wasn’t legally compliant and “didn’t do our due diligence.” Farley declares directly of his company’s past practices, “We don’t have consent of that person, and we’re running ads.”
MindGeek senior script writer Dillon Rice ascribes a motive to Pornhub’s leaders as he says, “They made so much money, and they were like top of the world, but they fumbled so hard because they didn’t take any of that money and reinvest it into moderation or like quality of the site. They just kind of gave it all to executives, and then they just made a shit ton of profit.”
Despite MindGeek now claiming to have cleaned up Pornhub and to have rectified its content moderation failures, Pornhub still does not verify the consent of everyone in its user-uploaded videos. In Sound Investigations’ previous video, Farley warns that rapists and traffickers use Pornhub to “make a lot of money.”
In Sound Investigations’ video release today, Rice divulges, “The system is so slow, and they don’t have enough moderators…” and also notes that even MindGeek’s ID checks for uploaders may not work with uploaders using so many foreign IDs.
As a script writer for many of MindGeek’s big studios, such as TransAngels, Rice bemoans that Pornhub refuses to use only content from studios that keep 2257s, records that everyone in the pornography videos is of legal age. According to Rice, Pornhub views these videos as “competition” to its user-uploaded content.
Rice’s claims of MindGeek’s executives putting profit over moderation and Farley’s admissions of non-compliance, past and present, are not the only revelations these two have to offer. Sound Investigations will continue to release more undercover videos of more MindGeek and Pornhub secrets from more employees.
This is a developing story. Sound Investigations will be releasing more undercover videos imminently. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 404-955-7002.
Sound Investigations is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Dillon Rice LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dillon-514-rice/
Dillon Rice LinkedIn archived: https://archive.is/8bgJu
Mike Farley LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mike-farley-21b187110/
Mike Farley LinkedIn archived: https://archive.is/YUTec