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Porn platform XNXX to fall under stringent EU platform rules

A screen displaying the website for AgeID, an age verification system for the British government’s planned online “porn block".
A screen displaying the website for AgeID, an age verification system for the British government’s planned online “porn block". Copyright Kelvin Chan/AP
Copyright Kelvin Chan/AP
By Cynthia Kroet
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It's the fourth adult content platform to be subject to the strictest DSA obligations.

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Adult content platform XNXX has been designated as a Very Large Online Platform (VLOP) under the EU’s platform rules, after it met the threshold of more than 45 million monthly users in the EU, the European Commission said today (10 July)

This means that the Commission can police the platform with the strictest set of rules under the Digital Services Act (DSA), including on protection of minors, taking down illegal content and mitigating risk stemming from their services.

XNXX, which has its EU headquarters in Czechia, now has four months, until November, to comply with the DSA.

Since 17 February, all online platforms, including XNXX, already needed to comply with the law’s general obligations, such as providing user-friendly mechanisms to report illegal content and clearly labelling ads on their services.

Today’s designation comes on top of three other porn platforms – Pornhub, Stripchat and XVideos – already classed by the Commission as VLOPs under the DSA last December. Those companies have appealed their designation, and the cases are still pending.

In June, the EU executive sent requests for information to those three platforms, asking them for more details on the measures they have taken against the amplification of illegal content and gender-based violence, and on age assurance mechanisms they have adopted.

The designation was seen an important step in Brussels' bid to crack down on a notoriously deregulated industry, amid increasing concerns about lax age verification mechanisms and the circulation of child sexual abuse material and AI-generated revenge porn.

XNXX is the 25th platform to be named a VLOP under the new EU rules. A first batch of sites named in April last year included Amazon, Booking.com, X and Facebook. The Commission most recently designated marketplaces Shein and Temu.

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