Pornhub believes that giving back to fans is important. The company is offering a scholarship of $25,000 to anyone with a GPA of 3.2 or higher and a desire to “make people happy.”
The scholarship offer, available to applicants through Oct. 31, has raised a lot of eyebrows. Some question the intent of this charitable act in concordance with the moral implications of the company.
The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) made an official statement of their disapproval. “The scholarship is a blatant attempt to exploit economically vulnerable young people and get the mainstream to accept the porn industry.”
Executive Director Dawn Hawkins of NCOSE is especially disgusted with the idea. “If Pornhub truly cared about disadvantaged youth, they could give away scholarship money without exploiting thousands of teenagers,” Hawkins said. “This company is built upon a legacy of exploitation and it is no more charitable in mind than a tobacco company that offers a scholarship to whichever teen can smoke the most of its brand-name cigarettes.”
However, Pornhub does not require that applicants watch videos in order to win. In fact, everyone is invited to participate regardless of major or view of the porn industry. Mike Williams, a Pornhub spokesperson, told USA TODAY College, “If someone is against porn and/or Pornhub, then they don’t have to apply for the scholarship. That is perfectly acceptable, especially since some might get turned off by the porn association regarding where the grant came from.” Yes, some might get “turned off,” no pun intended.
The company also forbids the use of sexual material in the required video submission. All that is required is an essay explaining how the student strives to make people happy.
“We will not seriously consider anyone if they include explicit material in the video. We are not looking for that whatsoever. I want to make that abundantly clear.” -Pornhub Vice President Corey Price.
Pornhub wants to judge the winner solely on the purity of heart and mind, which may seem contradictory to the company’s purpose. The website aggrandizes punishment, bondage and domination, which some may consider to be abusive sexual encounters.
The scholarship is being launched in honor of their new charity, Pornhub Cares. Pornhub cares? Certainly not for the perspective they form around women. In cases where women have suffered sexual abuse, the content of Pornhub’s website may be especially disturbing. Not only that but it is representative of an industry that has involved the abuse and exploitation of children.
In efforts to leave no one out, I must mention that there are support websites for men who have suffered sexual abuse and coped with the trauma with an addiction to pornography.
“Often the sexual acts that men carry through are nothing less than them recreating the abuse they suffered, which is a part of addictive cycle,” one support website claims. It raises definite questions about the motive of the demographic that traffics Pornhub.
In the end, it all depends on the applicant’s personal view, and part of me is glad that there will be some good, no matter how controversial, to come out of the porn industry.