During a recent Yahoo! shareholder meeting, CEO Marissa Mayer had an investor make a comment she might never have expected in a professional capacity: that she is pretty.
The man identifies him as George Polis. The investor with 2,000 Yahoo shares proclaims to be Greek and a “dirty old man,” to use his own words. Before getting to his main point, he says “you look attractive, Marissa.” The audience gave a brief laugh at his playground comment.
Polis then goes on to complain that he hasn’t “gotten a dime in dividends.”
“Are you planned to pay a dividend and are we a candidate for take over from Google or …from one of the big companies?” Polis asked.
One of Yahoo’s executives answered it was difficult for him to comment on the dividend. Mayer did not address the compliment to her looks.
Watch the slightly uncomfortable clip:
The Huffington Post’s Women in Tech blog called “the whole scene is disturbing, not just because this man has clearly embarrassed himself, but because it highlights a way some people think it’s appropriate to speak to women in power.”
“No one would ever stand up in a meeting to say he or she was attracted to Mark Zuckerberg,” the Huffington Post continued.
The Atlantic Wire pointed out another question that came during the meeting, which could have been perceived as sexist:
Another shareholder asked who she roots for in football, to meet some sort of manliness quotient it takes to run a company, apparently. Again, the Wisconsin native handled it well, saying she’s a Packers fan first and a 49ers fan second.
This shareholder, the Atlantic Wire later reported in an update, said the question “had nothing to do with meeting any ‘manliness quotient.’”