YAHOO! 2013 Shareholder Resolution

Resolved, that the shareholders of Yahoo! Inc. (“Company”) hereby request that the Company provide a report, updated semiannually, disclosing the Company’s:

  1. Policies and procedures for making, with corporate funds or assets, contributions and expenditures (direct or indirect) to (a) participate or intervene in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office, or (b) influence the general public, or any segment thereof, with respect to an election or referendum.
  2. Monetary and non-monetary contributions and expenditures (direct and indirect) used in the manner described in section 1 above, including:
    • The identity of the recipient as well as the amount paid to each; and
    • The title(s) of the person(s) in the Company responsible for decision-making.

The report shall be presented to the board of directors or relevant board committee and posted on the Company’s website.

Stockholder Supporting Statement

As long-term shareholders of Yahoo!, we support transparency and accountability in corporate spending on political activities. These include any activities considered intervention in any political campaign under the Internal Revenue Code, such as direct and indirect contributions to political candidates, parties, or organizations; independent expenditures; or electioneering communications on behalf of federal, state or local candidates.

Disclosure is in the best interest of the company and its shareholders and critical for compliance with federal ethics laws. Gaps in transparency and accountability may expose the company to reputational and business risks that could threaten long-term shareholder value.

While Yahoo! tells its employees not to use its funds or resources for political purposes in its Code of Ethics, the Company does not say how management may use corporate funds for such purposes anywhere on its website. Meanwhile, public records show that our Company contributed almost $1 millionin corporate funds since the 2002 election cycle (CQ and National Institute on Money in State Politics). Indeed, Yahoo! scored just 6 out of 100 in the 2012 CPA-Zicklin Index of Corporate Political Accountability and Disclosure, placing it at the bottom of a ranking of the 200 largest U.S. companies.

Relying on publicly available data does not provide a complete picture of the Company’s political spending. For example, the Company’s payments to trade associations used for political activities are undisclosed and unknown. In some cases, even management does not know how trade associations use their company’s money politically. The proposal asks the Company to disclose all of its political spending, including payments to trade associations and other tax exempt organizations used for political purposes. This would bring our Company in line with a growing number of leading companies, including Exelon, Merck, and Microsoft, that support political disclosure and accountability and present this information on their websites.

The Company’s Board and its shareholders need comprehensive disclosure to be able to fully evaluate the political use of corporate assets. We urge your support for this critical governance reform. 

 

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