Internet Porn Giant xHamster Blocks North Carolina Users Over Religious Freedom Law

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One of the biggest porn sites in the world has added its voice to the chorus of corporate critics slamming an anti-LGBT law in North Carolina.

On Monday, xHamster — ranked by Alexa as the 91st most popular website — said it is "blacking out" access to web users in North Carolina in response to the passage of widely criticized "religious freedom" law HB 2.

"Sorry, bigots!" the porn site wrote on Twitter.

The website tweeted that visitors from the state would instead be shown a tally of North Carolina-based searches and category views for the keywords "gay" and "shemale" (admittedly, likely not the term LGBT allies would prefer the site use for transgender performers).

"As of today, access to XHamster.com is blacked out in the state of North Carolina until further notice," the site wrote in an exclusive statement to Perez Hilton. "Judging by the stats of what you North Carolinians watch, we feel this punishment is a severe one. We will not stand by and pump revenue into a system that promotes this type of garbage. We respect all sexualities and embrace them."

However, Redditors quickly discovered instead of blocking all access to the site, the popup appearing for North Carolina users could be dismissed simply by clicking an X.

Source: Reddit
Source: Reddit

In addition to requiring trans people throughout the state use whichever gendered bathroom corresponds with the listed biological sex on their birth certificate, HB 2 strips North Carolina workers of their right to sue in state court for discrimination cases and preempts all local anti-LGBT discrimination ordinances, according to Mother Jones. While supporters of the bill say they are simply trying to protect the rights of religious Americans, accusations that religious freedom laws are merely a means to shield anti-LGBT bigots from legal consequences for discrimination sunk similar bills in Arizona, South Dakota and Georgia.

Online payment giant PayPal signified its own displeasure with HB 2 last week, canceling plans to open a 400-employee global operations center in Charlotte over the law.

Correction: April 11, 2016
An earlier version of this article stated xHamster had cut off access to North Carolina users entirely. In fact, the notification that is appearing on the site can be closed, restoring normal function.