Together with the Law Office of Nick Kahl, Stoll Berne attorney Josh Ross filed a class action against Airbnb on behalf of black Oregonians who have been denied access to equal public accommodations under the Oregon Public Accommodations Law. The lawsuit sought injunctive relief in the form of an Airbnb platform that does not result in measurable discrimination against blacks seeking to rent lodgings through Airbnb’s website.
At the time the lawsuit was filed, Airbnb allowed profile photos and names to be displayed to hosts during the booking process. In October 2018, Airbnb announced that it would no longer allow guest profile photos to be displayed to hosts prior to the acceptance of a booking request by a host. In March 2017, Plaintiffs and Airbnb reached a settlement.
As part of the settlement, Airbnb agreed to continue implementation of its 2018 changes relating to the use of profile photographs incident to the booking process. In addition, Airbnb agreed to review and update the way profile names are displayed to hosts as part of the booking process.