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Tennessee Hosts React to Airbnb’s New Rule on Indoor Cameras

Airbnb camera privacy concerns

Tennessee Hosts Respond to Airbnb’s New Rule Banning Indoor Cameras to Enhance Guest Privacy

Chattanooga, Tenn. – Airbnb, the popular online rental platform, announced on Monday that it intends to ban hosts from using indoor security cameras to observe their guests, in a bid to prioritize guest privacy. The new ruling has provoked mixed reactions from hosts in Chattanooga.

Policy Changes Aimed at Simplifying Security Measures

The San Francisco-based platform has previously allowed the use of indoor security cameras in certain areas, as long as their location was overtly disclosed on the listing page. However, the new policy, due to be enforced from April 30, will restrict the use of these devices to doorbell cameras and noise-decibel monitors. These will be permitted only in common spaces, with location and presence to be disclosed.

Local Hosts’ Reaction

Brad Wardlaw, a local host who rents a house on Chattanooga’s North Shore via Airbnb, employs outdoor security cameras to monitor his property and parking lot. He perceives the new policy as excessively invasive. “It’s an invasion of people’s privacy. That’s too much,” he expressed.

While Wardlaw does not utilize indoor cameras himself, findings from indicate that six percent of guests have discovered concealed cameras in their vacation rentals.

Beth Palmer, another Airbnb host active in Blue Ridge, Georgia and Spring City, Tennessee, reiterated this concern, adding she would “never” consider using an indoor camera. “That is absolutely unacceptable, and a violation of our guests’ privacy,” she said.

Industry Reactions

The Surveillance Technology Oversight Project welcomed the new ruling. Their Executive Director stated that the organization has spent years urging Airbnb to ban the use of indoor cameras. The group will continue applying pressure on Airbnb to ensure the consistent application of this policy, promoting more transparent disclosure about the placement of cameras.

Airbnb’s Head of Community Policy and Partnerships, Juniper Downs, revealed that the decision was made in consultation with guests, hosts, and privacy experts. “Our goal was to create new, clear rules that provide our community with greater clarity about what to expect on Airbnb,” Downs explained.

Downs added that the policy adjustment is likely to impact only a small number of hosts, as the majority of listings reportedly do not house indoor security cameras.

The news is brought to you by HERE News Network.

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