Airbnb saw a major victory on Tuesday night when 55% of voters in San Francisco voted against Proposition F, a measure that sought to regulate short-term rentals in the bustling city.
— Doug Sovern (@SovernNation) November 4, 2015
The $8 million campaign blitz Airbnb unleashed against Prop F starting in October appeared to work in its favor as just 45% of voters voted yes. If Prop F had passed, it would have restricted short-term rentals on Airbnb to just 75 days a year, required quarterly reports to the San Francisco Planning Department on how a unit is used, and resulted in fines and lawsuits for any violations of that code.
Approximately 135,000 ballots were cast for this measure.
— NBC Bay Area (@nbcbayarea) November 4, 2015
On Monday, protesters stormed Airbnb headquarters at 888 Brannan Street ahead of the vote, complaining that Airbnb, and companies like it, were contributing to mass displacement of residents and a lack of affordable housing in San Francisco. The demonstrators argued that housing units are being turned into hotel rooms. That, they allege, is leading to an increase in the number of evictions and a homeless epidemic in the region.
However, Airbnb had released a series of reports arguing that the $25 billion lodging startup has a positive economic impact on the city, such as $12 million in taxes.
Still, some social media users had unsavory sentiments to share on Twitter:
— Alice Truong (@alicetruong) November 4, 2015