Jerry was thrilled to tell 10,000+ global Yahoos that the company’s propaganda campaign is working: Carl Icahn and Microsoft have been painted as a desperate, ludicrous odd couple, and the proxy challenge has all but been defeated.
Or has it?
In his video address this morning, Jerry also noted that the propaganda blitz is going to continue, but now it’s going to happen on the world’s second largest global advertising platform:
I’m excited to tell you that we’re launching an advertising campaign online on our homepage as a way to continue to make our case to stockholders. With one of the largest audiences on the Internet, we’re taking full advantage of the power of our network to remind our stockholders why voting for Carl Icahn’s board of directors is a bad choice.
Here’s the ad:
Not exactly clarity in advertising. But that’s not what’s bugging us. A few questions for Jerry, Roy, et al:
- Now that Legg Mason is voting for Jerry, hasn’t Icahn already been defeated?
- Is Yahoo management and board (the only part of Yahoo that Icahn is trying to oust) paying Yahoo for this global advertising campaign? Our understanding is that Yahoo’s homepage inventory sells for about $500,000 a day. Is Roy Bostock covering that? Is Jerry?
- If not, is Yahoo’s board pre-empting paying advertisers to ensure that it won’t get canned? Is that really a shareholder friendly move?
- If Yahoo isn’t preempting any paying advertisers, can we assume that the ad market is so horrible that they couldn’t find any paying customers? What does that say about Yahoo’s ability to make Q3?
- Given that Carl Icahn’s beef is with 14 Yahoo employees, not Yahoo or its shareholders, shouldn’t Carl Icahn be given equal homepage time? What if Yahoo’s global audience wants to hear what HE has to say?
- Did the New York Times management take out full-page ads in the New York Times in defence of itself when its board was under threat?
- Is this now going to be a trend: Any time an activist shareholder tries to effect change at a media company, the media company’s senior managers commandeer its inventory to ensure that it defeats them?
We’re with you on the shareholder vote, Jerry. But can’t say we’re all that comfortable with this decision.