In Houston, Texas a local man was trying to find a place to stay in Austin via Airbnb, the online marketplace for finding vacation rentals, but he was soon rejected by the unit’s owner simply for being gay.
Buddy Fisher was looking to visit Austin, and as part of the reservation process, he listed the reason for his visit as being “for the pride festival.” Airbnb charged Fisher and everything seemed fine, but not for long. Fisher explained:
“It charged me the appropriate amount. Then about an hour later, I get a notice from Airbnb that the reservation was cancelled.” Soon thereafter, Fisher received correspondence from the person who listed the unit. He told Fisher:
“No LGBT people, please. I do not support people who are against humanity. Sorry.”
Fisher, rightfully so, was upset over being discriminated against: “It really really upset me, because I don’t feel like I don’t support humanity… It felt like we’ve been going in the right direction, but then something like this happens. It’s like you take five steps forward then two steps back.”
Fortunately, Fisher is not letting this episode dissuade him from visiting Austin and attending the Pride festival. Airbnb apologized for the ignorant lister; the service will not tolerate discrimination and has removed the lister and will not allow him to post any properties on its site.