Venice Beach residents and protesters are pissed off and concerned that the tech giant Snapchat is taking up too much real estate, destroying the sense of community and forcing rents to skyrocket.
Once resident, Mark Rago, told Jo Kwon "no one wants to come to Venice Beach to see a bunch of private offices with security guards." He claims his hometown has turned into a corporate campus for the company. Rago told Jo "they're kicking out mom and pop stores and they're displacing residents."
Bloomberg news reported last month that back in November, the tech giant was responsible for a bee colony disappearing from a Venice neighborhood. Bryan Brogers said that the knot holes around the hive, near the intersection of Cabrillo and Westminster and about five blocks from the ocean, had been sealed up with cement. Brogers, broke through the cement to get a look at the damage inside. “The honeycomb is all black now and no bees,” he wrote on the community forum Nextdoor. “I’m sure the queen bee was killed.” The post generated a chorus of 249 mostly outraged replies. Signs soon went up outside: “SNAPCHAT: BEE KILLER” and “ALL BEE LIVES MATTER.”
The bee incident “is a perfect metaphor for what Snapchat is doing to Venice,” one person posted on Nextdoor. “More overreach from Snapchat,” said another, tired of walking on familiar sidewalks and being eyed by Snap security guards patrolling in their park ranger hats.
Now, with Snap going public residents are concerned the company’s mega-rich founders and employees will swamp Venice much like what happened in the Bay Area.