June 07, 2018
MENLO PARK -- Earlier today, Facebook filed the the results of shareholder votes from last week’s annual general meeting, reporting that 35% of non-affiliated Facebook shareholders voted to withhold their votes for Mark Zuckerberg’s reelection to Facebook’s Board of Directors.
Ahead of the shareholder meeting, SumOfUs, an international consumer group, rallied Facebook shareholders and investment funds to withhold on Zuckerberg's election, citing the need for an independent board chair at the company.
In reaction to the vote, Lisa Lindsley, Capital Markets Advisor for SumOfUs, explained:
“In an unprecedented vote, 35% of non-affiliated Facebook shareholders opposed the reelection of Mark Zuckerberg to the Board of Directors. Facebook’s management may have ejected me from the meeting of shareholders to prevent me from raising the issues surrounding the performance of Mark Zuckerberg and I may have been temporarily silenced, but shareholders were listening and voted accordingly.
“My fellow shareholders recognized that the lack of independent oversight of Zuckerberg by the Board of Directors has contributed to adverse developments at Facebook which have increased the company’s reputational risk, legal risk, regulatory risk and staff turnover. - and even sparked calls for antitrust investigations that would spin off WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger.
The original motto for Facebook was “Move Fast and Break Things,” synonymous with Zuckerberg’s young leadership. But in the past two years, Facebook has broken more than the Internet--it has censored human rights activists; allowed companies like SCL and Cambridge Analytica to take advantage of users on its platform, collected private user call and text data facilitated the spread of fake news; and undermined democratic processes in the United States, United Kingdom, and elsewhere.
“Last year, we worked with Facebook shareholders to urge the company to create an independent board chair, warning that the current structure, where Zuckerberg serves as his own boss, was a recipe for disaster. Multiple scandals later, it’s clear that enough is enough. Zuckerberg has proven himself unwilling to protect Facebook’s user data or privacy, which is why we firmly believe that shareholders should take action to remove him as CEO and Board Chair.”