PornHub And Others Are Now Banned In Texas

One of the most visited adult websites in the world, along with several sites with graphic content, have been restricted or blocked completely in Texas.

In 2023, the Republican House majority passed the Age Verification Act, HB 1181, restricting anyone under the age of 18 from accessing adult websites.

A federal court recently upheld Texas’ legislation. Shortly after this celebrated ruling, the website blocked all access to the state.

A lawsuit was filed August 4, 2023, by the Free Speech Coalition, a group, which included the current operative company of PornHub, and the 5th Circuit of Court Appeals upheld the law last November, which could potentially cost the multi-million dollar corporation over $10,000 a day in fines, and up to a $250,000 penalty if anyone under 18 is reported accessing their content.

In February, the Texas Republican Attorney General, Ken Paxton, filed a lawsuit and millions of dollars in civil penalties against PornHub’s parent company to force them into compliance with the age restriction laws.

Paxton addressed the issue to the public in a statement saying, “Texas has a right to protect its children from the detrimental effects of pornographic content. I look forward to holding any company accountable that violates our age verification laws intended to prevent minors from being exposed to harmful, obscene material on the internet.”

Anyone who goes to the site as of Thursday is greeted with an extensive message from the corporation speaking out against the results of the legal battle in Texas, calling Paxton’s measures “ineffective, haphazard, and dangerous.”

The message continued with the company expressing their frustrations with Paxton’s legislation, further stating, “Until the real solution is offered, we have made the difficult decision to completely disable access to our website in Texas. In doing so, we are complying with the law, as we always do, but hope that governments around the world will implement laws that actually protect the safety and security of users.”

When addressing Paxton’s main issue of safety, PornHub defended their policies stating:
“While safety and compliance are at the forefront of our mission, providing identification every time you want to visit an adult platform is not an effective solution for protecting users online, and, in fact, will put minors and your privacy at risk. The safety of our users is one of our biggest concerns. We believe that the only effective solution for protecting minors and adults alike is to verify users’ age on their device and to either deny or allow access to age-restricted materials and websites based on that verification.”