airbnb Balks at Sharing Host Contact Information with City of Portland

Airbnb should share Portland hosts’ info with city to ensure safety, permit enforcement: Editorial

From The Oregonian, December 29, 2014

Airbnb, the San Francisco-based tech company that connects homeowners offering extra bedrooms with short-term renters, is making a credible case for the title. The company is resisting a proposed requirement that it hand over address and contact information for Portland hosts who offer rooms through the Airbnb website but who fail to get a city-mandated permit and inspection.

This is a new role for Airbnb, which has been portrayed as the model for the so-called sharing economy’s development in Portland.¬†While Uber came across as a rule-breaking rebel, rolling out its ride-sharing service in violation of city ordinances, Airbnb worked out regulations¬†with the Portland City Council and agreed to collect room tax on hosts’ behalf. It also helped that the company announced last March that it would base a hub in Portland and hire some 160 people.

  • Editors Note: Portland already requires that the host’s airbnb listing display their permit number and the airbnb database alredy has a field for Permit #. If airbnb were to agree to only display listings with permit numbers and take down any listing identified by The City as having a fraudulent permit number, the problem would be solved — public safety would be maintained and airbnb would not have to share any host data or even police their hosts.