Pornhub Offers to Host Anti-Kremlin Documentary That Russia Courts Banned

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By Masha Froliak | 5:12 pm, May 31, 2017

A Russian court ruled Wednesday that a controversial documentary accusing Kremlin officials of widespread corruption should be removed from the Internet. The documentary, which was a viral hit, fueled massive anti-government protests earlier this year.

Russia has now banned the film, but one unlikely site has re-uploaded it and is offering it to viewers: Pornhub.

The documentary, “Don’t call him Dimon,” alleges that Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and several other top aides to Vladimir Putin built a lavish empire of mansions, luxury yachts, multi-million estates with illicit money. The video has had 21 million views since it was posted in March. It was produced by Alexei Navalny, the Russian opposition leader who has promised to run for President next year.

Navalny was arrested along with other hundreds of people for participating in the country’s recent anti-corruption rallies, which his documentary sparked. Since then, he also has been attacked with a chemical liquid that was splashed in this face. The government brought a defamation case against him to get the documentary taken down from the Internet, and on Wednesday, the court ruled in favor of the Kremlin.

But just as soon as it was removed in Russia, Pornhub, which has its own axe to grind with the Russian government, posted an offer on VKontakte, the Russian Facebook, to host Navalny’s film. Minutes later, Pornhub users were downloading it.

Pornhub is no fan of Russia because the country banned the service last fall. The company was trying to get “un banned” by Russia’s Roskomnadzor (telecommunications “supervisor”) by offering its officials Premium Pornhub accounts. Six months later Russia decided to allow access to, but has continued blocking the site’s Russian domain.