MindGeek bags $32 million and control of DaftSex domain in copyright win

Mindgeek successfully sues and gains control over daftsex.

MindGeek, the behemoth porn company that owns sites and studios including Pornhub, RedTube, YouPorn and Brazzers, has won a $32 million lawsuit against pirate porn site DaftSex over copyright infringements.

Vasily Kharchenko, the alleged owner and operator of DaftSex, was ordered to pay $32,145,000 to MindGeek, which claimed that he uploaded 2,143 of its copyrighted works. A judge has also ordered the domain Daftsex.com plus affiliates including Artsporn.com and Daxab.com to be handed to MindGeek. Each of these domains now resolve to the Pornhub Brazzers channel.

The MindGeek lawsuit

In its lawsuit MindGeek, through parent company MG Premium Ltd., alleged that DaftSex had 125 million visits in June 2021, and that Kharchenko had personally uploaded the copyrighted videos, reported Torrentfreak.

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Kharchenko did not respond to the lawsuit, so a judge made a default judgement in MG Premium’s favor. The judge deemed that $15,000 for each of the alleged 2,143 copyright infringements was a reasonable compensation fee.

United States District Judge Benjamin Settle wrote that “only a large award will serve to deter these arrogant Defendants from future illegal action”.

With MindGeek seizing Kharchenko’s domain names as part of the lawsuit result, the company can potentially add millions of visitors to its overall user count.

“We are extremely pleased with the court’s decision, which is crucial to MindGeek’s fight to eliminate piracy of its content. Decisions such as this help contribute to restoring the rights of thousands of content owners who suffer because of illegal pirate sites such as DaftSex,” a MindGeek spokesperson told Torrentfreak.


Oh, the irony

For years MindGeek porn sites, such as Pornhub, were accused of allegedly allowing porn material that breached copyright rules onto their platforms, contributing to huge visitor counts. The subject was explored in journalist Jon Ronson’s audio series The Butterfly Effect.

More recently Pornhub has been purging videos deemed potentially illegal or otherwise infringing rules, as MindGeek responds to toughening consent, copyright and verification rules.

In 2021 MindGeek reached a legal settlement with fifty women who claimed they were coerced into filming videos and weren’t informed about where their content would appear online. They alleged that Pornhub featured videos filmed by the website GirlsDoPorn. These allegations, among others, led to the company struggling to find payment processors for its ad-related sales, as well as its content sites.

Read next: India blocks Pornhub and Brazzers in ‘obscene material’ crackdown / Iraq blocks ‘all’ porn sites after years of faltering censorship efforts

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Jamie F
Jamie F

Jamie is a freelance writer, contributing to outlets such as The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, CNN and Vice.

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