Apple investor vote sounds 'warning' over China app takedowns

Apple, China, Human Rights, App, Vpn, Great Firewall, Tim Cook, Apple İnvestor Vote Sounds 'Warning' Over China App Takedowns | Abs-Cbn News

Apple, China

27.2.2020

Apple investor vote sounds 'warning' over China app takedowns

An Apple Inc shareholder proposal critical of the company's app removals in China received a relatively high level of support at the iPhone maker's annual meeting on Wednesday, enough to push the company to respond, experts said. The proposal, which called for Apple to report whether it has "publicly committed to respect freedom of expression as a human right," was defeated, but 40.6 percent of votes cast supported the measure, according to company figures. The proposal highlighted Apple's 2017 removal of virtual private network apps from its App Store in China. Such apps allow users to bypass China’s so-called Great Firewall aimed at restricting access to overseas sites, and Apple's action was seen as a step to preserve access to the country's vast market. Wednesday's vote stood in contrast to previous years when critics made little headway with big investors on the issue. "A total this high is a striking warning — and it must have come from big institutional investors, not just retail shareholders — that Apple’s human rights policy in China has become a material risk for the company’s reputation," said Stephen Davis, a senior fellow at Harvard Law School's Program on Corporate Governance. "Apple will be under great pressure to respond rather than ignore this vote," Davis said. An Apple spokesman declined to comment on the results. Apple had opposed the proposal, saying it already provides extensive information about when it takes down apps at the request of governments around the world and that it follows the laws in countries where it operates. SumOfUs, the group that put the measure on the ballot, celebrated the totals. "Apple’s investors have sounded the alarm that Tim Cook needs to listen to the concerns raised by frontline communities such as Tibetans and Uighurs who have long suffered under a tech dystopia," said Sondhya Gupta, a campaign manager for the group. Cook is Apple's chief executive. In the past, Apple shareholders have voted down human rights measures related to China by much larger margins. A 2018 proposal that urged Apple to create a human rights panel to oversee issues such as workplace conditions and censorship in China was defeated, with 94.4 percent of votes cast against it. Sentiment appears to have shifted, experts said. "Given the high level of support received for the proposal, we expect to see the company engage with its shareholders on the issue and report to shareholders about what happened in the engagements, including any potential actions it intends to take as a result," said Kern McPherson, vice president of research and engagement for proxy advisory firm Glass, Lewis & Co, which supported the measure. Apple has signaled it is considering action. In a letter earlier this month to Access Now, an open-internet advocacy group, Apple's senior privacy director, Jane Horvath, wrote: "Apple has and always will consider freedom of expression a fundamental human right." The company, she said, "will consider providing additional details on our commitment in the future." The proposal was one of six topics to be voted on at Wednesday's shareholder meeting. By wide margins, shareholders approved Apple's executive pay, existing board of directors and the retention of Ernst & Young as its accounting firm, results that were widely expected. A "proxy access" proposal to allow shareholders to nominate more than one director to Apple's board was defeated, with 68.9 percent of votes cast against. Also voted down was a measure to tie executive compensation to environmental sustainability metrics, with 87.9 percent of votes cast against it, according to the company. Shareholders defeated a "proxy access" proposal to allow shareholders to nominate more than one director to Apple's board, with 68.9 percent of votes cast against. They also voted down a measure to tie executive compensation to environmental sustainability metrics, with 87.9 percent of votes cast against it, according to the company. Apple had opposed both proposals. Read more: ABS-CBN News

Expelled Wall Street Journal reporters leave China after headline rowBEIJING, China —Two Wall Street Journal reporters left China on Monday after being expelled over a controversial headline in an op-ed that angered Beijing. Three reporters were ordered out of the country last week over what Beijing deemed a racist headline that the journalists were not involved in writing — marking one of the harshest moves […]

China bans consumption of wild animalsThe outbreak of the novel coronavirus, which is widely believed to have originated in wild animals, has prompted China ’s top legislature to roll out a swift decision to comprehensively ban the eating of wildlife across the country. Well, it's about time 👍👍👍 Saka pa nila naisip yun kng kelan nagkaganito na. At dapat ipractice din nila proper hyguene sa mga sarili. Maligo at magtooth brush araw-araw. Kahit malamig sa country nla di sapat na dahilan yun para di maligo. Im sure may hot water namn sila dun.

China to Russia: End discriminatory coronavirus measures against ChineseMOSCOW - China ’s embassy in Russia has demanded authorities in Moscow end what it said are discriminatory anti-coronavirus measures against Chinese nationals, saying they are damaging relations and alarming Chinese residents of the Russian capital. China - cancer of asia im sure rusians doesnt want to suffer of your stuff! Its just a wise move for a sovereign state! disease manufacturing capital of the world

World 'simply not ready' for virus spread – WHO China mission chief'How many countries are planning hospital beds, planning ventilators...and the lab capacity to be able to manage this?' asks WHO's China mission chief. coronavirus nCoV

China quarantines 94 people on Seoul flight after 3 show feverNone of the 3 people with fevers have any history of travel to Wuhan. coronavirus nCoV Sometimes people just have fever

China reports 52 more virus deaths, lowest in 3 weeksBut the disease has now reached dozens of countries. coronavirus nCoV



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