Woman who starred in viral video highlighting street harassment in New York City sues director

Shoshana B Roberts was not paid and reportedly did not get everything she was promised

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The Independent US

The actress who starred in the video "10 Hours of Walking in NYC as a Woman", which showed the startling level of street harassment faced by women in the city, is now suing the director of the viral hit.

Shoshana B Roberts volunteered to be filmed by a camera hidden in a backpack in front of her in October 2014. The resulting video saw Roberts catcalled over 100 times in the day as she walked around New York City.

According to TMZ, Roberts is now suing the director, Rob Bliss, and the anti-street harassment group, Hollaback!, for using her to promote their agenda.

Bliss was the man carrying the backpack that filmed Roberts, and he came up with the idea after noticing the street harassment his girlfriend regularly faced. Hollaback! commissioned the video, stating that street harassment disproportionately impacts women, people of color, LGBT individuals and young people.

Watch the full video here

TMZ reported that Roberts did not have a written agreement with Bliss and that she is suing in the region of $500,000. Bliss also said Roberts did not get paid for the video and "she didn't get everything she was promised".

Shoshana did not have a written agreement with Bliss. He wouldn't say if she was paid for the gig, but believes she didn't get everything she was promised. He refused to be more specific.

Roberts is suing for at least $500k, and is also filing suits against Google, YouTube and TGI Friday's.

The viral street harassment video

In the video, Roberts is seen walking through the streets of New York City in jeans and a crew-neck shirt. She receives over 100 cat calls from various strangers she passes. Roberts does not respond to any of the men who shout at her. Many of them call "Nice", "Damn" or "Sweetie", while others hound Roberts to respond to them.

One guy keeps asking Roberts, "You don't wanna talk? We can't be friends, nothing? If I give you my number, would you talk to me?"

Another says, "Hey, what's up girl? How you doing? Somebody's acknowledging you for being beautiful. You should say thank you more!"

Following the video's publication, Roberts received rape threats online which Hollaback! said they reported to YouTube to have deleted.

Shoshana said on Hollaback's website, "I'm harassed when I smile and I’m harassed when I don't. I'm harassed by white men, black men, latino men. Not a day goes by when I don't experience this."

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