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Advertising San Francisco Outdoor Advertising

Passive aggressive AirBnb ads only catalyse tax criticism


By John McCarthy, Opinion editor

October 22, 2015 | 4 min read

Airbnb is set to dump its latest San Francisco ad campaign suggesting the local industry should be thankful it pays its hotel tax.

The ads took referenced a variety of industries, claiming its hotel tax helps contribute to the local economy - after the firm's contribtuions were the point of public scrutiny for many years.

The campaign claimed Airbnb's contribution could help expand library opening hours to humourous references to street escalators for the city’s numerous hills.

After being installed on Thursday morning, Airbnb confirmed to Business Insider that the inflammatory outdoor creative was to be removed. One spokesman said: “The intent was to show the hotel tax contribution from our hosts and guests, which is roughly $1 million per month.

"It was the wrong tone and we apologize to anyone who was offended. These ads are being taken down immediately.”

The ads erected around the San Francisco area were criticised on social media.

One user drafted up a response ad.

The ad offensive comes as the cities sees a proposed ballot (Proposition F) looking to crackdown upon short term rentals.

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