However, the occurrence of legal actions wasn’t limited to the person of the hedge funds "grossly" designated as the losers of the period. The slingshot crystallized, and even materialized, as we’ll see later, around the brokerage firms, this time by the hand of the users, small holders.
Nevertheless, a brief history of the latter is necessary in order to best measure the magnitude of the situation and its ramifications.
Applications such as "Robinhood" or "WeBull" radically changed the outlook for the stock market since they first appeared. Operating on the principle of no commission, these applications are, in reality, online brokers acting as an interface enabling the connection between customer orders and Wall Street trading firms.
The absence of transaction-related commissions, the main reason for the explosion in the attractiveness of these applications over the last five years, should not, however, cause us to forget how they’re financed. Indeed, this democratization of "trading" is also made possible by the fact that these applications incorporate, as Dave Michaels and Alexander Osipovich explained for the Wall Street Journal, a system that allows trading firms to benefit jointly from the issuance of orders by the public but also from market trends. In concrete terms, this approach is characterized by the fact that trading firms acquire from these structures the exclusive right to capture the flow of orders from users, paying themselves on the "spread", the difference between the price at which the share is "bought" and "sold".
In exchange for this capture, it is estimated that an application such as "Robinhood", for example, could have received, in the first quarter of 2020, the mesmerizing sum of 90 million dollars.
This potential "entanglement" of interests could thus raise questions, although this is not the subject here, questions reinforced by the revelations, by the same Wall Street Journal, of an SEC investigation against "Robinhood" for non-disclosure of transactions with high-speed traders, thus exposing the heads of the application to a potential fine of 10 million dollars.

It is in this context of "interweaving" interests that the controversial participation of "Robinhood" in the frenzy of the last few weeks took place. On January 28, through a press release, the company announced that it would limit trading to closing positions only in certain securities, a range of securities including securities of companies such as AMC or Gamestop. Drowned by the outcry who followed this announcement, it is, this time, through the voice of its co-founder, Vladimir Tenev, that the announcement of a limited permission to buy the securities materialized the next day, subject, nevertheless, to potential adjustments.
Shields were raised across the entire political spectrum, first of all on the Democratic camp’s side through the voice of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, describing this blockade as "unacceptable", and additionally found a quite unusual echo on the Republican side through Ted Cruz’s words, echoing the words of the Democratic representative.

This institutional "indignation" was accompanied by a mountain of legal proceedings against "Robinhood", which took the form of a "class action". These lawsuits, collective, introduced by the will of users of the application, have reduced the focus on the commercial restrictions, allegedly illegitimate, applied by the company.
Behind rather fanciful violations, let's bet it all while giving way to the time of justice, relying on antitrust complaints under sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act and arguing of an hypothetical inappropriate coordination preventing the purchase of certain securities in order to unreasonably restrict the stock market, other arguments carry a "seriousness" and a potential more legitimate characterization. Indeed, while the co-founder of the platform justified himself by stating that "As a brokerage firm, Robinhood has many financial requirements, including SEC net capital requirements and clearing house deposits. Some of these requirements fluctuate with market volatility and can be substantial in the current environment. These requirements exist to protect investors and markets and we take our responsibilities to meet them seriously, including through the actions we’re taking today" many group actions argued, in the same time, about a breach of the contract between users and the company but also hit the nail on a potential breach of the implied duty of good faith and fair dealing.

Another point advanced is the breach of the firm's obligations due to its own negligence, a breach characterized by Rule 5310, regarding "best execution and interposition", of "FINRA", the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which governs brokers and stipulates that any brokerage firm "shall use its best efforts to execute a tradeable client order that it receives promptly and in full".
During the hearing before Congress on February 18 of Vladimir Tenev, Alexiandria Ocasio-Cortez, spearhead of the protest as stated above, offered a sounding board to these challenges, reproaching the latter that "Given the antecedents of Robinhood, isn't it possible that the problem is not the clearing houses, but the fact that you simply haven't managed your own "book", or that you haven't been able to properly manage your own margin rules, or that you haven't been able to manage your own internal risks?”.

Finally, another axis contested by this "grouping" of users is the breach of the fiduciary duty owed by "Robinhood" to these users.
Benjamin J. Richardson, Professor of Law at York University, on the notion gives us this definition of fiduciary duty "In generic terms, a fiduciary relationship is one of responsibility and dependency. In generic terms, a fiduciary relationship is a relationship of responsibility and dependency. It generally arises when the exercise of a certain discretion in the interest of another person gives rise to a relationship of trust. Trust is an English law concept whereby specific property is held and managed by the trustee in the interest of the beneficiary”.
The fiduciary duty, anchored mainly in its idea of "globality" in the Common Law countries, but to be compared in its components, to a certain extent, to the duty of loyalty of the manager consecrated in France by the Court of Cassation, in a decision of February 27, 1996, thus imposes on the fiduciary, still according to Benjamin J. Richardson, "to act in the sole interest or in the best interests of the beneficiary".
The first reported class action, in the Southern District of New York, while taking into account that several other such actions have been filed across the United States, accused the enforcement agency of violating its fiduciary duties "by not disclosing that its platform was going to suppress GME's purchases, by terminating GME for its own pecuniary gain, by failing to provide access to its financial services in a timely manner, by failing to comply with all applicable legal, regulatory and licensing requirements and by failing to carry out transactions and actions requested by customers in a complete and timely manner".

Behind all of these claims, thus making it possible to reveal the "holistic" nature of this protest, both in the identity of the protesters and in the matter giving life to these protests, the consequences they suggest could, in the future, radically change the rules of use of the "market", particularly in the alleged accession it is supposed to have been granted. Judges and political representatives in a position to legislate on the subject are, therefore, in a complicated situation, to say the least, complexity characterized by the desire to combine increased control, for a tool that is now significantly linked to the competitiveness of a State, with the most widespread accession, failing which, faced with the shattering of a myth, would lead them to resolve a question that is far more complex than that of the financial health of the whole.