Airline Holsters Case on Whistle-Blowing Blog

     FORT WORTH, Texas (CN) – American Airlines has settled claims against the man who blogged about how the company bumped first-class passengers to seat its own executives and their wives.
     Tarrant County District Court Judge Tom Lowe signed a permanent injunction and final judgement on Wednesday between the airline and former flight attendant Gailen David who operates the website dearskysteward.com.
     American fired David in March, and a month later sued him and 10 unknown American Airlines employees for posting confidential passenger information.
     The settlement forces David to stop posting “Confidential, Proprietary or Trade Secret Information of American, AMR Corp., or American Eagle Airlines, Inc,” which includes financial information, business operations, board members’ information, employees’ information and travel data.
     In its complaint, American Airlines had said that “David’s information was procured through defendant Does (current American employees) through unauthorized use or access of American’s Sabre system that details the type of tickets or passes on which American’s passengers travel.”
     “Such information is confidential, proprietary internal business information of American and defendant Does breached their fiduciary duties and duty of loyalty in passing that information along to a defendant David who then disseminated it to the public,” the complaint states.
     On Feb. 29, for example, Does sent to David, and David posted, information about a man, by name, “and his lovely wife,” also named, and an “AMR Board Member,” also named, who “will be traveling to Miami from Washington on the 9th,” according to the complaint.
     The resulting March 8 post said: “Ms. [name] uses American as her own private airline that won’t fly until she’s ready. … The flight left over an hour late, causing scores of passengers to miss their connections to Europe,” the complaint states.
     After entering the settlement, David told KXAS-TV that he “was trying to demonstrate that there is extravagance going on in the company at a time when everyone else is being asked to cut things.”
     The former flight attendant has also uploaded several videos of himself onto YouTube. In drag, he mocks the company and its bankruptcy filing.
     “This lawsuit has been enormously expensive, it’s been at a major cost to me not only financially, but emotionally,” David told KXAS-TV. “It’s really time to repair American Airlines at this point and I don’t want to be the one who keeps this fight going.”

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