Mark Cuban just posted about stockholders who don't exercise their votes. I commented, but probably should have just posted and linked to here.
Like most popular votes, this one is crippled by three factors:
-time to vote
-time to understand choices
-inability to effect outcome
While I appreciate Mark's power to the people, vote or die attitude here, its not the solution. And if anything, it sounds more like a STFU to those who complain about poor corporate governance. I think something can be done beyond blindly hoping your pittance of votes can make a difference. Organize. Imagine a social responsibility brokerage house. Set up like e-trade, but in addition to market research on profit margins, it also includes social issues in its reports. That's easy, and probably already exists. The kicker is that you make all these people aware of the other people who aren't happy. You make voting the key feature of your brokerage. This is making money to make a difference. Every time a vote comes up, they tell you who to vote for, and how many people will be right there next to you. Even better, they could tell you which stocks are the most vulnerable to grass roots agitation, and encourage buys in those stocks. Make all aspects of making your voice heard available easily, and show people how they have made a difference and how they can help the most, and the world will listen.