In 2015, Airbnb introduced our Community Standards, a series of principles which provide expectations of our host and guest community. These standards state, “Members of dangerous organizations, including terrorist, organized criminal, and violent racist groups, are not welcome in this community.”
For us, this is about more than our company values and core mission of belonging – it’s about safety. We prioritize the safety of our community.
We take these standards incredibly seriously, and when we learn that a dangerous hate group member may be using Airbnb, we investigate and take appropriate action. This information can come to us in many ways, including from members of our community.
Our work to remove members of known hate groups from our community began in the days leading up to a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville in 2017. Prior to the event, members of our community flagged posts from The Daily Stormer – a racist website – that indicated a number of attendees were planning to book their accommodations using our platform. Because of the information included in these posts, we took the steps to cancel their reservations and remove their accounts prior to the rally.
When we learned in 2019 that attendees of a white supremacist conference in Tennessee were planning to book Airbnb listings for the event, we were again able to identify these reservations and take action. Later that year, the email addresses belonging to member of the Neo-Nazi forum The Iron March were leaked. We were then able to cross reference these publicly available email addresses and take action on more than 60 accounts.
The attack on the Capitol – and the ensuing reports that some of the alleged perpetrators identified as members of the Proud Boys or other hate groups – motivated our work on this issue. Since then, we’ve taken more aggressive action. As we’ve learned from law enforcement sources, media resources, and other outlets the names of individuals confirmed to have been responsible for the violent criminal activity at the United States Capitol on January 6, or who are otherwise associated with known hate groups, we’ve investigated whether the named individuals have an account on Airbnb.
Through this work, we have identified numerous individuals and they have been removed from Airbnb’s platform. To date, we’ve removed over 130 people in connection with the violence associated with the January 6 riots. The people are banned from using Airbnb as hosts or guests.
We know that we are stronger when working together with other stakeholders to improve in this work, and we are proud to have recently joined Tech Against Terrorism as the first sharing economy and travel company to aide in this important initiative.
To this point, this work has been mostly focused within the United States, but we also know that hateful ideologies and groups are not limited to our national borders. We’re exploring ways to better scale this important work globally in order to continue prioritizing the safety of our community in the 220+ countries and regions in which we operate.