Netflix faces copyright infringement over use of alleged unauthorised footage in documentary Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator

FP Staff

Dec 02, 2019 11:22:15 IST

Netflix is facing a copyright trouble over the controversial documentary, Bikarm: Yogi, Guru, Predator, as yoga colleges claim the streaming giant has used their material without permission.

According to Metro UK, Netflix's 90-minute film, which documents yoga master Bikram Choudhury and his abusive methods towards those in his classes, features several old clips from inside the hot yoga sessions that turned him into a celebrity in the US. However, Ghosh’s Yoga College, based in Kolkata, claims video footage and photographs used in the documentary belongs to the institute, and demands its immediate removal.

 Netflix faces copyright infringement over use of alleged unauthorised footage in documentary Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator

Still from Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator | Netflix

Bikarm, who has been accused of racial, verbal, and sexual abuse allegations, studied the craft of yoga at Ghosh College. The report further adds the film has showcased early footage of Bikram learning yoga and attending school.

Ida Jo, Ambassador for Ghosh’s Yoga College, spoke to Metro UK, and claims when the production team reached out to her to get photos and materials for their new film about Bikram Choudhury, she relayed this information to the Ghosh family. However, they said they had no interest in being involved. Hence, Ida reached out to the filmmakers and denied.

She continues despite being told 'explicitly they would need permission' to use materials owned by Ghosh’s Yoga College, including photos and the contents of Yoga Cure, the producers used them anyway.

A statement from the college read, "Netflix has blatantly violated copyrights of Yoga Cure Book by using extracts and photos from the book, and also their unapproved use of Ghosh’s Yoga College and Ghosh family photos. We demand such materials are removed from the documentary film, which they have taken without permission, and that a public apology is issued by all involved in this blatant act of copyright theft.’

Metro UK also adds Jerome Armstrong, author of Calcutta Yoga, alleges the series used their material without permission as well, specifically photos from classes. He argues 'no acknowledgement or attribution for the book' has been seen in the documentary.

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Updated Date: Dec 02, 2019 11:22:15 IST