Pornhub poster
A sign at the Pornhub booth is displayed at the 2017 AVN Adult Entertainment Expo at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 18, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The popular adult site Pornhub announced on Wednesday it will use an artificial intelligence to catalogue videos by tagging more than 10,000 performers through computer vision.

“Over the course of the past month alone, while we tested the model in beta, it was able to scan through 50,000 videos that have had pornstars added or removed on the video tags,” Pornhub VP Corey Price said in a press release. Pornhub plans to scan and tag over 5 million videos across its platform, eventually categorizing videos according to themes, traits and sex positions as well as performers. This raises new questions about privacy and consent in the porn industry.

Pornhub AI
Pornhub will now use artificial intelligence to identify porn performers and preferences. Pornhub

Venturebeat reported the facial recognition software will only categorize performers who already consented to being listed in Pornhub’s database. “Anything that gets more recognition to my name would help,” performer Joanna Angel told International Business Times. “When we put ourselves on Pornhub, we all hope it will act as an advertisement to draw people to our website. It doesn’t always work out that way.”

Pornhub is widely criticized across the sex industry for aggregating free content with lenient moderation. "The content available on these tubes is highly racist, misogynistic, and chauvinistic," adult filmmaker Erika Lust told Vice. On the other hand, Angel is glad to work with Pornhub and knows of many performers who have found creative ways to make money from their Pornhub content. “It’s the number one source of porn traffic, whether we like it or not,” Angel said.

The site receives almost 80 million views a day and continues to grow. “We had an antiquated system for tagging videos that just wasn’t cutting it anymore,” Price said, according to VentureBeat. "Now, with the influx of technology, particularly regarding AI and computer vision, we’re able to update our system and implement a model that will significantly improve content tagging.” Motherboard pointed out it’s unclear who will own the data this AI technology collects. Pornhub has so far declined to identify the source of its new software.

“We partnered with a very reputable company that specializes in computer vision,” Corey told IBT in an email statement. “People will be able to view content that might not have been brought up in their searches before.It will also improve accuracy. Often we get pornstars reach out for us to change tags as they were improperly tagged in videos.”

Pornhub AI plan
Pornhub will use AI technology to scan and tag over 5 million videos across its platform. Pornhub

Some legal experts are concerned about privacy issues since Pornhub, like Youtube, allows almost anyone to upload a video. So it is sometimes used to spread illegal content like revenge porn. The system could quickly become problematic if, down the road, the AI software provider connected this data with other sources from social media.

"Imagine if a video of you had been uploaded by an former partner, for example, without your permission and, as a result of the application of AI to a site's content library, it not only grouped together all videos involving you, but included your name, Facebook or Twitter profile, and so on," tech-savvy lawyer Neil Brown told Motherboard. There are already several tech startups working to identify sex workers and their lookalikes.

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For example, the reverse-image lookup software powering Pornstar.ID has allegedly identified more than 7,000 performers with content across the web.

It’s clear why a fan would want to identify a performer he or she enjoys. Pornhub’s plans to include AI-powered tags for fetishes and preferences will make it easier for viewers to find content they want to see, while avoiding content they don’t want to see. All things considered, Angel didn’t appear worried about Pornhub’s recent move. She welcomed the opportunity for more exposure on the increasingly competitive platform.

“I think now enough studios and performers are working directly with Pornhub that the illegal content gets taken down pretty quickly, or it’s hard to find,” she said. “I don’t see how that [AI] would violate any kind of privacy.”