Playboy, the global pleasure and leisure company, has severed ties with Lebanese-American media personality and former porn star Mia Khalifa, following her controversial comments on social media about the recent Hamas attacks on Israel.
The company announced the decision to terminate its relationship with Khalifa, removing her Playboy channel from its creator platform.
In a statement, Playboy emphasized its commitment to free expression and constructive political debate but condemned Khalifa’s remarks as “disgusting and reprehensible.” The company asserted a zero-tolerance policy for hate speech and stated that her words and actions had consequences.
Khalifa’s comments on Twitter drew widespread attention. She was quoted saying, “If you can look at the situation in Palestine and not be on the side of Palestinians, then you are on the wrong side of apartheid and history will show that in time.” She further commented on the attire of guerrilla fighters, criticizing the Zionist apartheid regime and urging freedom fighters to document their struggle against oppression.
Playboy, which transitioned into a digital platform after ending its print edition in 2020, partnered with Khalifa in February 2022 as part of its Centerfold community. The company’s CEO, Ben Kohn, had praised Khalifa’s approach to life and career, noting her fearless and thought-provoking demeanor. However, Khalifa’s recent comments crossed the line for the company, leading to the termination of their collaboration.
Playboy’s decision underscores the ongoing debate surrounding freedom of speech and the responsibilities associated with it, especially in the age of social media where public figures can instantly reach millions with their views and opinions.
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