Pornhub risks losing its domain name due to a legal tussle

The Pornhub domain name is in jeopardy due to a lawsuit between MG Premium, a sister company of the adult platform, and porn site Goodporn. We explain this complex situation to you.

Credit: 123RF

While access to Pornhub and other porn sites is now subject to the presentation of a driver’s license in the United States, we have just learned that the domain name of PornHub is threatened by a legal tussle.

As explained by our colleagues on the site Torrent FreakMG Premium, a MindGeek-owned Pornhub sister company, recently filed a lawsuit against adult site Goodporn for massive copyright infringement.

DMCA takedowns, the favorite weapon of MindGeek and Pornhub

As you may know, Pornhub has established itself for several years as one of the world leaders in free porn available online. The success of the platform is mainly based on the fact that it allows users to post their own contentbut that’s not all since it also houses thousands of videos whose MindGeek owns the copyrights, such as Brazzers and Reality Kings brands.

However, this lucrative business model is regularly threatened by pirate sites, who offer these same contents without authorization. For several years now, the parent company MindGeek has systematically sued the sites responsible, with DMCA takedowns. For example, MindGeek won its lawsuit against DaftSex a few months ago. In addition to the millions of dollars awarded in damages, the court that issued the decision also ruled that MindGeek could appropriate the related domain names.

Also read: Pornhub, Xvideos, YouPorn – check the credit card, here is the government’s idea to protect minors

A trial that takes an unexpected turn

In 2021, MindGeek has filed a similar massive copyright infringement lawsuit against GoodPorn.The GoodPorn site is a pirate site, displaying copyrighted adult entertainment content without permission or license”, can we read in the complaint. Before going through the court box, MindGeek tried to fix the issue by sending DMCA requests, without success. “The defendants do not even attempt to comply with their obligations under the DMCA. To the contrary, Defendants consistently refuse to comply with proper and compliant DMCA Takedown Notices,” assures MindGeek.

Only, MindGeek did not expect the response from GoodPorn owner, namely Amrit Kumar. Indeed, he claims in return that MG Premium (which belongs to MindGeek) signed a bilateral agreement with GoodPorn in 2019 to transfer the rights to its content. A copy of the agreement, signed by Kumar and Ferass Antoon, the former CEO of MindGeek, was provided as evidence.

contract mindgeek goodporn
The famous contract mentioned by Amrit Kumar

The future of Pornhub will be determined by the winner

This is where things get more complex since on his side, MG Premium ensures that the contract is fraudulent and that Ferass Antoon has never held a position of responsibility within the company (he was, on the other hand, at MindGeek). As for Kumar, he claims on the contrary that “the bilateral agreement is real and legitimate. The validity of the contract can be confirmed by checking the financial transactions of Mr. Ferass Antoon or those of his partners, such as Bernd Bergmair, who owns a majority of MindGeek, and David Tassilo, COO of the company”.

For now, it is therefore up to the court to untangle this bag of knots. But as part of its counterclaim, GoodPorn demands $10 million in damages for breaking the famous contract. And above all, the site wants to be recognized as the legitimate holder of the rights and also wants to reclaim the domain name if they win.These counterclaims are false, frivolous and absurd. We look forward to our lawyers taking this case through the court system,” MindGeek told TorrentFreak.

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