#73: Malta Wants Nomads, Barbados to Launch Metaverse Embassy, The Rise of Overemployment
A newsletter about digital nomads, internet countries and borderless living.
Hey folks 👋
A new excerpt of my book, Global Natives, will launch for early supporters tomorrow. It looks at the role of passport power in digital nomad lifestyles, and gives context to the rise of nomad visas over the past 18 months.
If you’d like to read or listen to it (~13 min), pre-order a copy of the book now:
In other news, Buffer is running its annual global survey on the state of remote work (this year working in collaboration with Nomad List and Remote OK for the first time), so you should go get involved.
🇲🇹🏝️ Malta: The Island Welcoming Digital Nomads (BBC Travel)
Another week, another nomad visa: The Maltese Nomad Residence Permit allows remote workers to keep their overseas employment and stay on the island for up to one year. Malta is one of only two European nations (the other being Portugal) with a vaccination rate above 80%—which makes a pandemic resurgence much less likely there this winter. Currently, there are 50 and 60 new Covid cases per day.
💻🏆 Remote Work Will Break the US Talent Monopoly (Devon Zuegel)
Will remote work be the fuel for small, stable countries to grow, diversity and upskill their economies. Devon Zuegel argues the US is losing pace as the world’s leading immigrant destination, while underdog nations like Uruguay, Costa Rica, Croatia and Singapore are now finally able to compete for global talent—because people are working on the internet, rather than flocking to hub cities.
🇧🇧🌐 Barbados to Become First Nation With a Metaverse Embassy (Coindesk)
Barbados was the first jurisdiction in the world to launch a nomad visa last year, and now it’s breaking new ground again. With ambitions to become a remote work hub for tech and innovation, the Barbadian government is working with metaverse companies to buy up virtual land and launch digital embassies (note that’s the metaverse, not Zuck’s Facebook 2.0 metaverse).
🎙️📝 Distributed by Default: Matt Mullenweg (Knowledge Project Podcast)
Automattic—the company that makes Wordpress and powers many of the websites you visit every day—has been fully remote since 2005 and today has more than 1,700 employees worldwide. In this interview with investor Shane Parrish, founder and open source advocate Matt Mullenweg shares the lessons he’s learned along the way, offering a fascinating deep-dive into how his globally-leading distributed company operates.
🤝💼 The Double Lives of White-Collar Workers With Two Jobs (Guardian)
Meet the new wave of tech workers holding down two—sometimes three—full-time jobs at once. Remote work has made moonlighting easier, but choosing this path comes with unique challenges. This story delves into the clashing meetings, multiple bosses and fear of getting caught, asking: Are the rewards worth the lies?
👉 PS: If you’re the procrastinating type, head to Reddit’s r/overemployed community for a closer look at this emerging subculture in anonymous action.
❄️🔮 Westarctica: A Very Big Little Country (Afar)
We tend to think of nation-states as old, static and everlasting, but in reality, they’re constantly shifting and changing shape. This longform piece (13 mins) tells the story of Westarctica—a micronation that emerged just 20 years ago—and Travis McHenry, the American who followed his dreams to discover new frontiers and ended up founding his own tiny country.