Proposals replacing Mark Zuckerberg as a chairman and one limiting his voting power, failed at Facebook's annual shareholder meeting.
A group of activist Facebook shareholders tried to curb CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s power over the company at its annual shareholder meeting Thursday, as shareholders overall voted down two measures that would have shaken up Facebook’s corporate structure and limited Zuckerberg’s control.
Shareholders who directly asked if Zuckerberg would be willing to relinquish some of his voting power.
After years of scandal from everything to data leaks and privacy to the spread of misinformation on the platform, a small group of activist shareholders led by hedge fund Trillium Asset Management say that Zuckerberg hasn’t been held accountable.
When asked if he’d be willing to cede some of his power over Facebook, Zuckerberg instead talked about government regulation, avoiding the question.
Shareholders were proposing the replacement of Zuckerberg with an independent chair of the company’s board of directors.
Currently, each share Zuckerberg holds represents 10 votes. Shareholders wanted each of Zuckerberg’s shares to count for one vote.
One proposal outlined a change in voting structure to limit a special class of shares that carry extra votes, shares mostly owned by Zuckerberg.
Zuckerberg outlined some of the product areas that Facebook is focused on, including a plan to push into private, encrypted messaging. He also addressed Facebook’s control over content, and echoed a sentiment that he and other executives have been talking about for years: The government should share in the responsibility of deciding what posts should go up, or come down, on Facebook.
During the question-and-answer session, one shareholder asked about Facebook’s efforts to create an artificially intelligent voice-assistant. Another asked about plans for a digital currency. Zuckerberg declined to get into specifics on either.