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Lawsuit asks Netflix to release ‘orgasmic meditation’ movie without ‘hijacked’ sexually explicit material

More than a dozen people formerly associated with a wellness company known for its “orgasmic meditation” have asked a judge to rule on an upcoming Netflix documentary, saying the film should be released without sexually explicit material” hijacked” that could show them, their lawyer said. Wednesday.

A hearing on the request for a temporary restraining order and a request that Netflix blur or redact footage in “Orgasm Inc.” is scheduled for Friday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, attorney Paul Nicholas Boylan said in an interview.

The documentary, billed as an investigation into allegations about the OneTaste company, is set to be released on Saturday.

In a lawsuit filed late last month, 15 plaintiffs allege that a former OneTaste videographer, Chris Kosley, provided sexually explicit videos of private retreats, workshops and classes to a documentary filmmaker.

It is unclear whether the video showing the plaintiffs, who are identified in the lawsuit as “Doe”, is in the film.

When the company fired Kosley in 2016, he “appropriated” the recordings, which were intended for educational and internal instructional purposes, according to the lawsuit.

Kosley, who is named as a defendant, did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday. A Netflix spokesperson declined to comment.

Filmmaker Sarah Gibson did not respond to a request for comment. In an interview with a Netflix fan site published on Tuesday, Gibson said the video was “legally obtained and much of it was already public and distributed by OneTaste themselves, or on YouTube, or in previous reports”.

“No one’s rights were violated by the images we used,” she told the site. “Where there were more sensitive images included, we used them sparingly and took immense care and responsibility to edit and crop them so as not to exploit or sensationalize them. It was important to convey the large number of people participating in these activities and to use the images to provide context of the organization’s culture.

In a petition launched in September demanding “privacy and protection”, more than 400 people affiliated with OneTaste said they were “horrified” to learn that Netflix had purchased the video without their consent.

“Some of these classes were intimate to us and portions of the material may depict some of us in various stages of undressing,” the petition reads. “In some cases, this includes extreme close-ups of our genitals. Such material should never have been stolen or purchased by anyone, especially the Netflix producers.

The suit describes the plaintiffs as former associates, students and employees of OneTaste.

The group had a “reasonable expectation that its participation in the events would be private and confidential,” the suit says. “None of the plaintiffs would have participated in any of the events or allowed themselves to be videotaped if they had known that it was possible that the materials could or would be distributed to anyone for any purpose. .”

In a statement Wednesday, OneTaste CEO Anjuli Ayer described the people “standing up to Netflix” as “brave and powerful.”

“I join them in calling on Netflix not to move forward with such a fundamentally flawed project,” Ayer said.

OneTaste was founded in 2005 to promote what the company describes as “desire-based living.”

A 2020 BBC podcast series described it as “orgasm cult”. In a 2018 article quoting former staff and community members, Bloomberg Businessweek reported that OneTaste resembled “some kind of prostitution ring – a ring that exploited trauma victims and others seeking healing”.

The company pushed back on the characterizations, suing the BBC for defamation in an ongoing case and describing Bloomberg’s portrayal as “unrecognizable”.

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