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Citadel critic files lawsuit after cybersquatting decision

Person upset at Citadel and its involvement in GameStop controversy is suing the company to keep his domain name.

A screenshot of the image at the top of CitadelAir.com, showing three private jets with the Citadel logo on them.
This image is at the top of CitadelAir.com, a domain subject to a lawsuit filed Wednesday.

A critic of the financial firm Citadel and its CEO has filed a lawsuit (pdf) to stop the transfer of his domain name. [Update: after filing the case, the plaintiff didn’t do anything else. The case was dismissed.]

Christopher Britt created the Twitter account @CitadelAir in reaction to Citadel’s involvement in the controversy over trading in GameStop (NYSE: GME) shares. The account parodies the firm and its CEO, Kenneth Griffin. It is supposedly written from the perspective of Griffin’s private pilot.

He subsequently registered CitadelAir.com. Citadel filed a UDRP cybersquatting complaint against CitadelAir.com and won.

But Britt isn’t handing over the domain name. Instead, he filed a lawsuit in Federal District Court in Arizona yesterday. Britt is asking the court to declare that his registration and use of the domain is not unlawful.

In the lawsuit, Britt alleges, “This is simply a case of a multi-billion dollar company trying to silence a private citizen who is critical of its operations and pokes fun at its CEO’s extravagant lifestyle.”

The lawsuit states that Citadel has previously tried to have Britt’s @CitadelAir account suspended twice, but Twitter reinstated the account both times. Now, he alleges Citadel has used its victory in the UDRP to get the account suspended again. (It’s suspended as of the time of writing.)

By filing the lawsuit, the UDRP order to transfer the domain is on hold, pending the outcome of the lawsuit.

Lewis & Lin, LLC is representing Britt.

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