How Airbnb Plans to Verify Rentals After a California Shooting

How Airbnb Plans to Verify Rentals After a California Shooting


Why? Most companies don’t necessarily, you know, put the flag in the ground that way.

We just wanted to put the rumors to rest about are we going to go public any month, and just be very, very clear about what our general timeline is. We don’t want to pin down an exact month, but we just wanted to lay to rest any questions about something being imminent before the holidays.

You put your own home up on Airbnb, made it available. You also still stay at Airbnbs. What’s your craziest Airbnb experience?

Well, we’ve had all sorts of pretty weird ones. I’ll give, like, one or two. One time, I booked a woman’s home and had the novelty of having a parrot in the listing. And I thought that was really cool until I got to the listing and I realized it was a studio apartment, that she would be in the space with me, with the parrot, and that she slept on the couch, I slept in the bed, and the parrot joined me in the bed. And it wasn’t really wanted, but, you know, I didn’t fight it.

But we also have some really weird things. We get millions of customer calls every day, and we get some of the most bizarre calls. One day a customer calls us and says they want a full refund. We say, “Why do you want a full refund?” They said, “Because the house is haunted and there’s a ghost in the house.” And we’re, like, “O.K., well, we have to adjudicate this.”

So we call the host, and all the host has to do is deny it, because there’s no photo evidence of ghosts. Well, unfortunately the host confirms the ghost, says that it’s a friendly ghost named Stanley, and that the ghost Stanley is in the listing description.

We read the listing description, Stanley is mentioned. So we go back to the guest and the guest says, “Yes, we knew about Stanley, that’s why we booked it. But Stanley has been harassing us all night.” How do you adjudicate that? So I guess the point is in this new economy built on trust you can only imagine the kind of issues you deal with. There is no playbook for this stuff.

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