Earlier reports had indicated that only shareholders as of the close of business February 23 may attend the meeting, citing stern language in Apple's proxy statement and comments by an company spokeswoman. The proxy reads: "Only shareholders of record as of the close of business on February 23, 1998 are entitled to receive notice of, to attend and to vote at the meeting." Other Apple spokespeople reiterated that policy.
But spokeswoman Tami Begasse said today that there had been a misunderstanding and that Apple's intent had always been to allow press and analysts to attend the meeting--albeit with some restrictions.
"It was miscommunication on my part," Begasse said today. "I said this would not be a press event. And what that meant was that there would be no product demonstrations, no press question-and-answer period, and no cameras."
The event will be held at a smaller location than usual this year, inside a building on the Apple campus rather than an auditorium at a nearby college. The computer maker has faced intense media scrutiny as it has struggled to turn itself around.
Analysts had said that shareholders are probably pleased with improvements in Apple's financial performance and the recent doubling of its stock price. Earlier this week, the company reported its second consecutive profitable quarter. (See related story)
Items up for shareholder approval include the ratification of board members named in August and authorization of a stock plan granting 17 million options to purchase Apple's shares for top executives and directors.
Reuters contributed to this report.