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When What’s Right is Right

AirbnbIs this the moment that everything pivots?

In the wake of the President's tepid and flip-floppy response to this weekend's tragic events in Charlottesville, people and companies are starting to say "no mas." And, while it's not nearly enough, it is definitely a promising start.

The CEOs of Merck, Under Armour and Intel have resigned their posts on the President's Manufacturing Council. Go Daddy, Discord and Google have booted white supremacist groups off their servers, sending one site that celebrated the death of Heather Heyer scrambling for a new home from which to spew its hate.

And, Airbnb, the disruptive hospitality platform that the industry loves to hate, has aggressively moved to block consumers tied to hate groups from the lodging options it represents. In the days before Charlottesville, Airbnb was performing background checks to block people it believed were attending the Unite the Right rally, specifically those who were organizing large events on a neo-Nazi website. It reportedly also cancelled reservations and has removed some sympathetic homes from its site.

Which, of course, brings up the whole "you can't deny service to someone because of their lifestyle choices" challenge.

Sure you can. Indeed, States have adopted such laws, allowing, for instance, bakeries to refuse making a wedding cake for a gay couple. Which is childish and stupid...and all the more underscores that something as crucial for our future as blocking hate from gaining a greater foothold in our lives is the noble path.

And, a recent article from Wired posits that we already have the technological tools to fight hate...if we just use them.

Kudos, Airbnb, for doing what was right before it was right. We can only hope that "the bigs" follow your disruptive lead.

Now...when will Twitter enforce its terms of service?

Bill Geist

Bill GeistBill Geist

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