So #Snapchat, that limited-time image/video multimedia messaging app is ready to step on a larger stage as it makes its initial public offering worth $3 billion. They’re also marketing themselves to college students and other youths of that general age group, presenting parent company Snap Inc. as the perfect first-time stock market investment. The IPO trading is set to start on Thursday, March 7, but while some interest has been generated, an opposing voice is starting to ring out against entertaining the Snapchat IPO, ironically from the location of its own headquarters over at Venice Beach, California.

‘Bad neighbor.'

In a surprising mass action, protesters gathered around the headquarters buildings of Snap Inc., where they waved signs and placards to the tune of “IPO Snap Must Go” and “Evil Spiegel,” the latter referring to Snapchat co-founder Evan Spiegel.

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They held further demonstrations calling on passing pedestrians and motorists not to invest in the Snapchat IPO, in solidarity of the protesters’ grievance that the social media tech firm’s rapid growth and development has led it to buy up and convert large swathes of property in the Venice neighborhood, in a way destroying the small-town beachfront atmosphere of the place for their own advancement.

Why are people from Snapchat’s Venice Beach hometown so vehemently crying out against Snap Inc. now? #Venice Beach longtime resident Jim Robb tells that the company has been making purchases of apartment buildings in the area to convert into additional office space. That includes occupied apartments as it turns out, throwing the people living in them out on the streets as he describes it. The main HQ building of Snap is only one block away from the Pacific beaches in central Venice, but the surrounding structures are now being converted into new expansions of their office complex.

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Snap Inc. itself is rather proud of their home, playing up their history of starting out business literally from a beach house on the famous Ocean Front Walk.

Contrasting views

Due to gradually scarce office buildings in Venice, part of the so-called “Silicon Beach” tech hub of Los Angeles and Santa Monica, most other tech firms like rival social network Facebook have moved to the planned community of Playa Vista to set up their satellite workspaces. Snapchat, however, is staying, leading more protests by residents about their insensitivity. But some people hold a positive view of Snap Inc.’s growth, saying that public attention on the firm means more people are coming to Venice. #Snap Inc.