Airbnb announced that it’s changing the way guest profiles are displayed in its app — for Oregon residents specifically. Airbnb hosts who are based in Oregon will now see a potential guest’s initials, rather than their full name, until after they’ve confirmed that guest’s booking request. The change will fully roll out by January 31st.
The change aims to prevent racial discrimination among hosts, per the company’s announcement, by stopping them from gleaning a guest’s race from their name. A 2016 study found that Airbnb guests with names that sounded Black were 16 percent less likely to have bookings confirmed than guests with names that sounded white.