People visiting Pornhub usually think the website is simply a provider of access to an endless supply of free porn, but Pornhub also allows performers to upload, sell and monetize videos they make themselves. Those performers who used PayPal to get paid for their work now have to switch to a different payment method.

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Reported by Vice, Pornhub had the following to say on their blog: "We are all devastated by PayPal's decision to stop payouts to over a hundred thousand performers who rely on them for their livelihoods. It then directed models to set up a new payment method, with instructions on how PayPal users can transfer pending payments. We sincerely apologize if this causes any delays and we will have staff working around the clock to make sure all payouts are processed as fast as possible on the new payment methods."

PayPal said to Motherboard that: “Following a review, we have discovered that Pornhub has made certain business payments through PayPal without seeking our permission. We have taken action to stop these transactions from occurring.”

A spokesperson for Pornhub was also on hand with Motherboard stating: "Decisions like that of PayPal and other major companies do nothing but harm efforts to end discrimination and stigma towards sex workers. While we still have several payment methods for our models available, we will continue to add more sex worker friendly ones and explore cryptocurrency options in the near future."


PayPal is a payment processor that has discriminated against sex workers over the years. The acceptable use policy that PayPal has in place states that "certain sexually oriented materials or services" are forbidden. That is the kind of vague phrasing that allows the payment provider to revoke the use of their payment services whenever they feel like. There are many payment apps and banks that forbid sexual services in their terms of use, forbidding the process of payments for sex work long before legislation like the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act came about last year. That kind of legislation definitely has its place, but also emboldens companies to kick sex workers off their platforms, making the situation for performers very difficult.