Shareholders Ignore Apple’s Request: New Directors Must Be Voted In

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Pic by Scott McNulty (http://www.flickr.com/photos/blankbaby/84763497/)

A potentially major coup has happened at today’s Apple Annual Shareholder Meeting: ignoring the request of Cupertino itself, Apple’s shareholders have approved a measure that now requires a majority vote for the approval of new Board Directors.

That’s big. For the first time, any new appointment to Apple’s Board of Directors will require that the shareholders approve in majority any new appointee. That gives the shareholders a lot more power over the company’s future… and could potentially lead to some interesting power struggles down the road.

Other items that are being voted on today include Board of Director compensation, financial conflict of interest reports, disclosure of Political Contributions and ratification of Ernst & Young LLP as the company’s independent accounting firm.

In addition, we expect there to be a lot of discussion of what Apple is doing to address widespread allegations of worker abuse in Apple’s supply chain, as well as what Cupertino will do with its hoard of over $80 billion in cash.

What do you think about this news? Steve Jobs always wanted a degree of autonomy from the whims of shareholders, and this new rule would seemingly fly in the face of that. Is this just the first step towards Apple being run more like other publicly traded tech companies — and therefore the first step back down the path of mediocrity that Steve Jobs led Apple out of upon his return in the late 90s — or is this move just common sense? Let us know your thoughts.

[via MacObserver]