Airbnb CEO Thinks He’s Above the Law
Airbnb’s CEO Ben Chesky has encouraged hosts in San Francisco to register with the city, as has been required by law for almost a year. But, he hasn’t kept up with that same practice, and now he’s admitting it, despite his promise to work with cities to crack down on those who are hosting illegally.
Chesky’s Airbnb profile confirms that he’s been hosting guests on his couch until as late as August, 2015, though the registration law was passed in February of that year. According to Business Insider, a spokesperson for the company said that he was “honoring the reservations guests had already made” when he allowed them to stay, but that he had stopped accepting new bookings by that time.
Either way, he’s in violation of San Francisco’s law, and he’s not the only one. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that of the thousands of Airbnb hosts on the site, only 879 are registered with the city.
Chesky has said that he is in the process of registering his home now, and that he’ll be accepting new renters once the process is complete. Still, it doesn’t set a great example for both current and potential hosts. If the CEO doesn’t need to register to use the service, why should anyone else?