American corporations have been subject to an onslaught of activist pressure from leftist organizations over the past few years.
Twitter is no exception.
The social media giant held its annual shareholder meeting recently, where an environmental activist organization called “As You Sow” had proposed a shareholder resolution to force Twitter to disclose emissions reporting in order to make the company become more climate change conscious.
The resolution went too far even for Twitter’s Board, who despite its Leftist leanings, formally opposed the resolution from As You Sow, explaining the emissions reporting was unnecessary due to Twitter’s current policies in place. One such policy referenced was Twitter’s new “Director of Sustainability” role, yet no clear responsibilities were lined out for this position.
CFACT, in light of these developments, attended Twitter’s annual meeting and submitted the following question:
“What exactly are the responsibilities of Twitter’s new Director of Sustainability role, and how will they help increase users and revenue for Twitter? Is there a direct business purpose to this role, other than trying to appease activist groups such as As You Sow?”
Yet before Twitter’s Board even got to answering questions, it was announced that As You Sow was withdrawing their shareholder resolution regarding the climate report after internal discussions with Twitter leadership.
No details as to what those discussions covered were announced to shareholders. No explanation was given as to what Twitter said or promised in order to get As You Sow to withdraw the resolution.
CFACT submitted a follow up question, asking:
“What did Twitter concede to As You Sow in order to convince them to withdraw stockholder proposal No. 6 regarding a climate report?”
It is possible that it had something to do with Twitter’s pledge to join the “Science Based Targets Initiative” regarding greenhouse gas emissions, which was announced earlier in Spring and addressed in an As You Sow press release.
According to the website Sciencebasedtargets.org:
“Targets are considered ‘science-based’ if they are in line with what the latest climate science deems necessary to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement – limiting global warming to well-below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C.”
On As You Sow’s website, all it says in reference to Twitter is “Resolution Withdrawn, Agreement Reached.”
CFACT will continue to monitor and investigate this situation to reveal what exactly was discussed, and what agreement was reached with the activist group. Twitter has a responsibility to ensure the actions it is taking are in the best interests of the company and its shareholders.
In addition to these climate-related issues, Twitter also faced several questions regarding censorship of conservatives.
One shareholder got right to the point, asking: “Why do you continue to censor only on the conservative side?”
Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey answered, saying: “We have no bias in any of our policies, in our enforcement, in our machine learning algorithms. If we ever find anything even hinting at that, we look at it immediately and rectify it. If we make any mistakes along the way, we admit to them and correct them.”
Another shareholder voiced what many are wondering, asking: “Please consider reactivating Donald Trump’s account and other conservative accounts that are abiding by non-violent standards. Could you please speak to your willingness to do so?”
Dorsey answered in not so clear terms.
“We went directly towards our Terms of Service, in the removal of that account. There’s no switching from that. When we permanently ban an account, we permanently ban it. We are as I mentioned earlier, looking at making our appeals process much more robust, and certainly would consider, down the line, not just for this account in particular but all accounts, a way for people to appeal a permanent ban decision. That work has not been done, we’re not working on it right now, but it’s definitely something that we’ve considered and continue to consider as time goes on.”