Sensitive Subject

Early in the year popular pornographic website, PornHub, held a contest on their tumblr page to pick their next, non-pornographic advertisement. After wildling the over 3000 submissions down to a mere 15, the winner was chosen. The selected advertisement was displayed over New York City’s iconic Times Square for literally the whole world to see. The ad featured two hands making a heart shape, with the PornHub logo in the middle. To complete the picture ad, Nuri Galver the designer, pictured peoples of all nationalities singing a parody of the Beatles song, “All You Need Is Love” titled, “All You Need Is Hand”.


Placing an advertisement in Time’s Square has long held the significance that your brand has finally made the big time. If you want to reach not just your target market, but also the world, you can do so. If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. Speaking of target market, is there a specific market for a pornographic website. One of the other contenders focused on having it all, for any type of person. At the end of the day pleasure and masturbation is for everyone. In addition, with the World Wide Web yielding thousands of porn sites, most sites with a cult following, is it worth it to try to bring an influx to one specific website? Everyone has personal preferences when it comes to stuff like this, and it would be difficult to sway their attachment from a certain site.

Late on Wednesday it was reported that the billboard had been removed, with no explanation from the pornographic great.

In the age of the Internet, is it necessary for an Internet based company to place and advertisement in, what could arguably be called the busiest place in the world? Granted the advertisement was non-pornographic and by all means tasteful, could there be some issues surrounding placing such an advertisement in such a place?


Maskeroni, A. (2014, October 8). Pornhub Erects Huge Billboard in Times Square After Long Search for a Great Non-Pornographic Ad. Retrieved October 9, 2014, from

2 thoughts on “Sensitive Subject

  1. I think it is important for an internet company that has ambition to have their ad placed in a prominent place like Time Square. The intention with an ad placed in a Time Square-like venue is to be seen by as many people as possible and to show that your brand has arrived, as you said. PornHub is adult and it’s not a universal company appropriate for everyone. And that doesn’t take away from its significance, but you’re right in asking if it’s important, if it’s really necessary to have it out in the open. Being an internet company, it’s place is very much online, and when something that is online crosses over to the offline realm it’s almost taboo because we don’t imagine it in our daily lives. PornHub is a part of culture that is underground, it’s hush hush, it’s not something you talk about a lot. PornHub is something I don’t use but I’m aware of it because like everyone who finds out what porn is, you are aware of porn, and if PornHub is “THE” Google or Youtube or go-to place to serve that to people, then it is a significant player in the market but it’s not necessarily for everyone. Just because it’s not intended for everyone does not mean it doesn’t deserve the equal rights to have an ad displayed.

    However, PornHub’s ads need to abide by the regulations for decency in ads. PornHub needs to play by the rules like all the companies. I think their ad was safe, a smart introductory ad choice. It was so tame compared to some of the print ads that get displayed in Time Square, in magazines, etc.; and let’s not forget commercials too. Sex sells, and it is a double standard for PornHub to get taken down although their ad was safe. What PornHub stands for is a product and service that is wrong to many people that worry how it will influence their children and people in their lives. The irony is that many brands and companies have highly sexualized and idealized ads that run or get displayed, and they don’t get taken down as easily as PornHub’s ad was taken down.

    Despite the issues that arise with controversial companies like PornHub, that want to assert their name, I think they should keep trying to cross over to the offline world, whether it be PornHub, Etsy, or any online name. As long as they respect public decency I think there will come a day when you see an ad for PornHub and none will freak out. It will become apart of the background like so many ads.


  2. I am surprised the ad was even allowed to be up there in the first place with not only porn be a controversial topic, but illegal for anyone under 18 to watch. Times Square is tourist place in New York City generally targeted towards family. Thousands of families and children walk through Times Square each day. I am sure there were numerous complaints about the advertisement due to the fact that children are asking what porn is . A question parents do not want to answer. Yes, there are other advertisements promoting sex using half naked males and females, but they do not have the word ‘porn’ in them. If they are trying to promote in the offline world, they could try adult magazines or news articles promoted to a more targeted audience than Times Square.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s