FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Airlines sue passenger rights advocate over website
Montreal--November 28, 2012--United and Continental Airlines launch lawsuits against Canadian maintainer of passenger rights advocacy website UnTIED.com for allegedly violating their copyright, trademarks, and privacy of their senior employees.
Untied.com has been exposing abuse of passengers and employees by United Airlines since 1997, making it one of the first consumer advocacy websites on the Internet. The site has collected more than 25,000 passenger complaints against United, along with hundreds of postings from mistreated employees.
Untied.com was founded by Canadian consumer advocate Jeremy Cooperstock, after United Airlines ignored his complaints related to travel with them. Through the site, Cooperstock advises readers on safeguarding their rights, through legal action if necessary.
After 15 years of maintaining Untied.com and being a thorn in the side of the airline, Cooperstock was served with a pile of court papers last week: United and Continental Airlines are suing him both in the Federal Court of Canada and in the Superior Court of Quebec.
Cooperstock denies the airlines' allegations and says that the effectiveness of his site is the real reason for the lawsuits: "They are trying to shut down my site instead of dealing with their problems. If they had put as much effort into improving their service as into these SLAPP-suits, there'd be no reason for the website."
Cooperstock is raising funds through the site to fund his defense. He says he is ready to fight as far as necessary to stand up for consumer rights and protect freedom of speech.
Further details are available from Untied.com/SLAPP
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- Jul. 16, 2012: United expresses "concerns" regarding Untied.com.
- Jul. 16, 2012: United requests removal of work contact information for senior employees and change of site logo.
- Aug.-Oct., 2012: Cooperstock adds prominent disclaimers and a pop-up dialog to the site, making clear that his site is not affiliated with the airline, and discouraging readers from misuse of the work contact information for senior airline employees.
- Nov. 19, 2012: United and Continental sue Cooperstock in the Federal Court of Canada and the Superior Court of Quebec.
- Feb. 15, 2013: Quebec Superior Court rules on Cooperstock's motion to dismiss.
- Sep. 27, 2013: Quebec Court of Appeal returns file to Superior Court for a new hearing on motion to dismiss.
- Jun. 3, 2014: Quebec Superior Court rules on Cooperstock's motion to dismiss.
- Sep. 27, 2016: Quebec Superior Court grants United's injunction.
- Jan. 16, 2017: Quebec Court of Appeal dismisses appeal of injunction (without hearing appeal).
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