Wal-Mart Exposed: Videos You Were Never Meant To See

When they weren't discussing sales, Wal-Mart men dressed in drag.

ByABC News
April 9, 2008, 1:56 PM

April 9, 2008— -- From the tough anti-union talk to the wilder side of men in drag, videos of Wal-Mart corporate meetings are being sold to willing buyers, and the corporate behemoth is not happy about it.

The videos, thousands of them spanning three decades, are in the library of a production company in Lenexa, Kan. Flagler Productions Inc. was hired on a handshake deal by Wal-Mart in the 1970s to produce and film corporate sales meetings and other company events.

After receiving a verbal commitment that Flagler would be used for meetings in the future, Wal-Mart abruptly ended its deal with Flagler in 2006 causing the company to lay off most of their employees, according to Flagler. Representatives from Wal-Mart tried to buy the library in 2007, but Flagler and Wal-Mart could not agree on a price so the sale never happened.

Now, Flagler is offering the tapes to anyone else who might be interested, including the media and plaintiffs' attorneys.

Wal-Mart is currently defending itself in a lawsuit that claims widespread sex discrimination regarding issues of salary and promotional opportunities on behalf of at least 1.6 million female employees.

The attorney representing the female employees, Joe Sellers, says that some videos show the company acknowledged there was a lack of women in management back in the late 1980s.

"There's no question these videos capture in a fairly candid way the sentiment of top executives many years ago," Sellers said. "This is not new, and it is not something that top management was unaware of."

Indeed, in one video obtained by ABCNews.com, Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton addresses the issue at a shareholders meeting in 1987. "We know we haven't gotten as far as we'd like to be advancing women in our company. But we're very conscious of it," he says. [Watch video.]

Wal-Mart released this statement to ABCNews.com today. "Needless to say, we did not pay Flagler Productions to tape internal meetings with this aftermarket in mind. It's definitely an unusual business model on their end, and we can't imagine too many other clients will be eager to pay for this service."