Business

Inside Mark Zuckerberg’s 1,380-acre oceanfront Kauaʻi estate

In this edition: a deep dive into Mark Zuckerberg's Hawaiʻi estate, the growing pains at Rest of World, and how to stop employees from leaving. ...

Welcome back to Insider Weekly! I'm Matt Turner, the editor-in-chief of business at Insider.

You might know a little about Mark Zuckerberg's Hawaiʻi estate thanks to the videos the Facebook cofounder has posted of himself shooting arrows and throwing spears there. Or maybe you remember the famous sunscreen-clad hydrofoil surfing session nearby.

But as Tyler Sonnemaker reported this week, there's more to the story of Zuckerberg's nearly 1,400-acre Kauaʻi estate than your typical tropical billionaire playground. 

In a visually stunning project showcasing the natural beauty that drew Zuckerberg to the island, Tyler's story explains how Zuckerberg's estate there reflects a broader story of the dispossession of Native Hawaiians. Read on for a Q&A with Tyler, and to check out the project, complete with drone footage, illustrations, maps, and audio pronunciations of Hawaiian phrases.


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Inside the controversy over Zuckerberg's Hawaiʻi estate

Mark Zuckerberg in front of a teal background and illustrations of leaves.

Reporter Tyler Sonnemaker takes us behind the scenes of his deep dive into the clash over Mark Zuckerberg's Koʻolau Ranch.

What prompted you to look into the controversy over Mark Zuckerberg's Kauaʻi estate?

I knew that Zuckerberg filed these controversial lawsuits a few years back. But as a newcomer to Hawaiʻi myself, I had been learning about this devastating history of how Native Hawaiians got kicked off their land.

So when Zuckerberg bought more land in March, I was curious how it ended up in his hands. After stumbling into this rabbit hole, I discovered that every single of one of his properties reflected a different way in which Hawaiians were dispossessed.

What should readers take away from your reporting?

We have a lot to learn about how to share and take care of the limited land we have, and Indigenous peoples who know the land so intimately have a lot to teach us.

As the world becomes hotter and more crowded, I hope people continue to hold these new land barons accountable for how they use this precious resource — whether Bill Gates in Washington, Elon Musk in Texas, or Larry Ellison, Steve Case, and Zuckerberg in Hawaiʻi.

This is a visually stunning, in-depth, multimedia piece of journalism. What went into producing this?

Our graphics team custom-built beautiful and engaging visual elements, a bunch of editors helped me wrangle all this information into a compelling narrative, and multiple freelancers helped us capture video, record audio, and ensure we accurately portrayed Hawaiian history and culture.

Also, the dozens of Hawaiians and Hawaiian experts — Zuckerberg's neighbors, legal experts, local farmers, and others — who shared their time and knowledge really helped inform this story. 

Read the full report here:


Growing pains at a high-profile multimillion-dollar publication

Sophie Schmidt, founder and CEO of Rest of World
Sophie Schmidt, founder and CEO of Rest of World

Sophie Schmidt, the daughter of the former Google exec Eric Schmidt, started Rest of World with big ambitions and a $60 million promise of funding. It's a nonprofit newsroom that aims to cover the global tech stories that other media outlets miss. 

But former staffers told Insider about growing pains. They spoke of tensions over editorial processes and vision and a lack of diversity among writers — accusations that Schmidt has disputed.

Here's how Schmidt is addressing issues — and looking to the future


The Democratic Party's fight for young voters

Millennial and Gen Z voters riding away on the back of an elephant, leaving a donkey

Millennials and Gen Z voters are supposed to be shoo-ins at the ballot boxes for the Democratic Party. Most young people are progressive-minded on current political issues. But recent developments reveal a different story. 

Republicans have swept a host of recent races across the country, campaigning against vaccine mandates and the threat of cancel culture — issues that loom large for young adults and college students. 

Here's how Democrats could lose out on Gen Z and millennial voters


McKinsey knows how you can stop your staffers from getting poached

Mad Men, AMC
&quotEmployers still have the transactional mindset — they think the only way to keep their people from taking calls from recruiters and being poached is to pay them more money. Employees are saying there's more to it than that,&quot one McKinsey associate partner said.

More and more employees are prioritizing their physical and emotional health, but organizations aren't keeping up with those needs. The companies that do are poaching staffers and giving people options of where to work. 

New research from the consulting giant McKinsey says employers can slow attrition with a little more love and a better understanding of how to facilitate improved work-life balance in a time when staff expectations have shifted. 

See what the new McKinsey report recommends to employers


More of this week's top reads:


Compiled with help from Phil Rosen.

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