A black man named Gregory Selden tried to book a place to stay while visiting Philadelphia for the first time via AirBnB and was unfortunately rejected. However, when he made a fake profile posing as a white man named “Todd” and tried booking the same place, his invitation was accepted with open arms.
#AirbnbWhileBlack made a fake profile as a white guy and was accepted immediately. pic.twitter.com/miUWG3OvQV
— G. Sel (@_GSelden) May 4, 2016
Selden posted his experience to his Twitter page, and although he contacted the company directly about the negativity, they did not respond to them. Instead, they wrote to Buzzfeed after the news broke, and said that they’re working on diminishing discriminatory practices between their users.
“We recognize that bias and discrimination present significant challenges, and we are taking steps to address them,” they said. “Profile photos are an important part of our community and are one of the many tools that help hosts and guests connect with one another. We welcome the opportunity to work with anyone that can help us reduce potential discrimination in the Airbnb community.”
How serious do you take discrimination issues? @AirbnbHelp@Airbnb
— G. Sel (@_GSelden) May 7, 2016