Originally published: May 10, 2012
Last updated: May 10, 2012 - 8:33pm
Verizon shareholders voted overwhelmingly against a proxy question that would have required the company to apply network neutrality principles to its growing wireless network.
The proposal, which was pushed by the Open Media and Information Companies Initiative (Open MIC), was only supported by 7.9 percent of the votes from shareholders who either voted at the company's annual meeting or via mail by proxy. But Open MIC executive director Michael Connor told The Hill that the vote was just the first step in educating shareholders about net neutrality. "These are multi-year efforts. It doesn't happen overnight," he said. He noted that the vote cleared the 3 percent threshold necessary to ensure the issue can appear on the ballot again next year. Verizon's board had publicly opposed the proposal, telling the Securities and Exchange Commission "[t]his proposal would substantially interfere with the technical operation of Verizon's wireless broadband network and have a wide-ranging and significant impact on Verizon's business and operations" by preventing the company from engaging in "reasonable network management."
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