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Hosting via Airbnb
Motivations and Financial Assurances
in Monetized Network Hospitality
Airi Lampinen
Mobile Life Centre
...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
• Monetary exchange can 

act as a gateway to further 

social exchange and
i...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Goals of the study
• Examining the role of financial assurance
structures in t...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
• 12 in-depth semi-structured interviews 

with Airbnb hosts in the SF Bay Ar...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Key themes
1. Extrinsic and intrinsic motivations
2. Money and host–guest int...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Monetary and interpersonal motivations 

need not be contradictory
• Money as...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“I had to get all this dental surgery -- 

It was gonna be about $8,000.00 

...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“I have brought in people that 

I have made connections -- 

really deep fri...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
• Money matters to Airbnb hosts
• Valued social interaction with guests
• Gra...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
• Monetary exchange can facilitate 

managing expectations
• Monetary exchang...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Monetary exchange can facilitate
sociable host–guest interactions
“If you got...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“With Airbnb, you have a lot of
flexibility. -- And so you have
flexibility to ...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“And we’ve had people who
came because in my profile I
said I love opera. -- ‘...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“I think a really good [experience]
was the Swedish woman who
stayed here. Sh...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Financial assurance structures 

reduce risks and uncertainties
• Platforms c...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“[I]t could be so awkward. 

It’s really not. Because everything 

is, the tr...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
“I told him it was only for him. 

I came home and there was five
people in my...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Future Work
• Different types of hosts, especially 

those who manage several...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
Implications for Design
• Attracting more cautious participants
by leveraging...
Always	explore!	Always	create!	Always	enjoy!
• Financial transactions need not be a
break from the ideals of ‘sharing’
• F...
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Hosting via Airbnb: Motivations and Financial Assurances in Monetized Network Hospitality / Airi Lampinen & Coye Cheshire

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Paper presentation at CHI 2016 conference.

Abstract below. Full paper available at the ACM Digital Library (http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=2858092&CFID=612262700&CFTOKEN=46397914) and as a freely accessible preprint (http://www.mobilelifecentre.org/sites/default/files/Airbnb%20Submitted%20Camera.pdf)

For further publications, see: airilampinen.fi/publications

"We examine how financial assurance structures and the clearly defined financial transaction at the core of monetized network hospitality reduce uncertainty for Airbnb hosts and guests. We apply the principles of social exchange and intrinsic and extrinsic motivation to a qualitative study of Airbnb hosts to 1) describe activities that are facilitated by the peer-to-peer exchange platform and 2) how the assurance of the initial financial exchange facilitates additional social exchanges between hosts and guests. The study illustrates that the financial benefits of hosting do not necessarily crowd out intrinsic motivations for hosting but instead strengthen them and even act as a gateway to further social exchange and interpersonal interaction. We describe the assurance structures in networked peer-to-peer exchange, and explain how such assurances can reconcile contention between extrinsic and intrinsic motivations. We conclude with implications for design and future research."

Picture credits: Shai Fox, Rob Wassell, Nathan Yergler, Larry Jacobsen, merry, jinkazamah, David Lytle, tara hunt, James Brown, Living Rooms London (all photos creative commons licensed, available on flickr)

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Hosting via Airbnb: Motivations and Financial Assurances in Monetized Network Hospitality / Airi Lampinen & Coye Cheshire

  1. 1. Hosting via Airbnb Motivations and Financial Assurances in Monetized Network Hospitality Airi Lampinen Mobile Life Centre Stockholm University Coye Cheshire School of Information UC Berkeley
  2. 2. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! • Monetary exchange can 
 act as a gateway to further 
 social exchange and interpersonal interaction • The use of money need not be a break from the ideals of ‘sharing’
  3. 3. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Goals of the study • Examining the role of financial assurance structures in the economic and non- monetary interactions that are facilitated 
 in monetized network hospitality • Corroborating key findings about 
 hosts’ intrinsic and extrinsic motivations from a prior study in a different geographical and cultural setting
  4. 4. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! • 12 in-depth semi-structured interviews 
 with Airbnb hosts in the SF Bay Area, USA • Hosting status: Current, prior, and aspiring • Hosting style: Remote and on-site • Some dual hosts (Airbnb & Couchsurfing) Research materials
  5. 5. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Key themes 1. Extrinsic and intrinsic motivations 2. Money and host–guest interactions 3. The platform as an assurance structure
  6. 6. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory • Money as an initial motivation • Valued social interaction with guests • Gratification of being a good host • Ancillary benefits of hosting
  7. 7. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “I had to get all this dental surgery -- 
 It was gonna be about $8,000.00 
 out of pocket. So then, I was like, 
 ‘Well, I have this empty room 
 in my house that I never use. 
 It’s just for my guests to stay 
 and my friends.’ -- ‘Oh. I should maybe 
 use Airbnb’ ‘cause some of my friends 
 had told me they were 
 making some good money on it.” Greg • Money as an initial motivation • Valued social interaction with guests • Gratification of being a good host • Ancillary benefits of hosting Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory
  8. 8. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “I have brought in people that 
 I have made connections -- 
 really deep friendships 
 that otherwise it would not 
 have happened. -- [O]ne of them 
 came into my house, the other day, 
 who just wanted to see me 
 and see my dog. I’m having dinner 
 with another one on Thursday. So, yeah, 
 the friendship is just, it’s amazing.” Shirley • Money as an initial motivation • Valued social interaction with guests • Gratification of being a good host • Ancillary benefits of hosting Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory
  9. 9. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! • Money matters to Airbnb hosts • Valued social interaction with guests • Gratification of being a good host • Ancillary benefits of hosting “There’s something very nice 
 about when you show a guest in, and, 
 not to say that this happens all the time, 
 but their eyes light up 
 because I’ve worked so hard 
 on making this place spotless. -- 
 And it sounds kind of silly to say that 
 preparing a studio could be 
 this work of pride, but it is.” Adam Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory Monetary and interpersonal motivations 
 need not be contradictory
  10. 10. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! • Monetary exchange can facilitate 
 managing expectations • Monetary exchange can provide flexibility • Monetary exchange can act as a gateway 
 to additional exchanges Monetary exchange can facilitate sociable host–guest interactions
  11. 11. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Monetary exchange can facilitate sociable host–guest interactions “If you got it really cheap, you might get like students or something -- 
 If you got it a little higher, then you figure the people that are okay to pay that are maybe not gonna be 
 as troublesome or something.” Greg • Monetary exchange can facilitate 
 managing expectations • Monetary exchange can provide flexibility • Monetary exchange can act as a gateway 
 to additional exchanges
  12. 12. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “With Airbnb, you have a lot of flexibility. -- And so you have flexibility to decide how much 
 money do I want to make? 
 How often do I want to clean? 
 How hard do I want to work at it? 
 But we can always meet our financial goals as they shift and change by shifting and changing who we accept.” 
 Marissa Monetary exchange can facilitate sociable host–guest interactions • Monetary exchange can facilitate 
 managing expectations • Monetary exchange can provide flexibility • Monetary exchange can act as a gateway 
 to additional exchanges
  13. 13. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “And we’ve had people who came because in my profile I said I love opera. -- ‘Cause we also if people want to use the discounts that come with our subscriber status at the opera and the symphony, I’ll order tickets for ‘em in advance 
 if they want me to.” Marissa • Monetary exchange can facilitate 
 managing expectations • Monetary exchange can provide flexibility • Monetary exchange can act as a gateway 
 to additional exchanges Monetary exchange can facilitate sociable host–guest interactions
  14. 14. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “I think a really good [experience] was the Swedish woman who stayed here. She’s gonna host me this summer. -- She’s more than a host. She’s like a friend-host.” Barbara Monetary exchange can facilitate sociable host–guest interactions • Monetary exchange can facilitate 
 managing expectations • Monetary exchange can provide flexibility • Monetary exchange can act as a gateway 
 to additional exchanges
  15. 15. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Financial assurance structures 
 reduce risks and uncertainties • Platforms can facilitate the core peer-to-peer transactions (e.g. by handling payments) • Platform companies are called upon to reduce uncertainties (e.g. to help resolve conflicts between hosts and guests)
  16. 16. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “[I]t could be so awkward. 
 It’s really not. Because everything 
 is, the transaction is handled 
 behind the scenes. When they 
 show up, they’re fully paid, 
 and you don’t have to worry 
 about that. -- I think that 
 that helps the social interaction 
 to not be [as] weird as it could be.” Maria • Platforms can facilitate the core peer-to-peer transactions (e.g. by handling payments) • Platform companies are called upon to reduce uncertainties (e.g. to help resolve conflicts between hosts and guests) Financial assurance structures reduce risksFinancial assurance structures 
 reduce risks and uncertainties
  17. 17. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! “I told him it was only for him. 
 I came home and there was five people in my house all super high. 
 -- He had the key. It was weird. And then he hit on me the next day. 
 That made me really uncomfortable. 
 -- I just stayed at my boyfriend’s 
 the whole weekend. -- 
 I then emailed Airbnb, 
 and they took care of it.” Emily • Platforms can facilitate the core peer-to-peer transactions (e.g. by handling payments) • Platform companies are called upon to reduce uncertainties (e.g. to help resolve conflicts between hosts and guests) Financial assurance structures reduce uncertaintiesFinancial assurance structures 
 reduce risks and uncertainties
  18. 18. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Future Work • Different types of hosts, especially 
 those who manage several listings 
 on a professional basis • Guests’ perspectives • Ancillary commercial activities, such 
 as concierge and cleaning services • Asset and labor driven peer-to-peer exchange
  19. 19. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! Implications for Design • Attracting more cautious participants by leveraging financial brokering systems • Platforms as trusted third parties assuring non-monetary peer-to-peer exchanges • Highlighting and recognising the value 
 of different types of contributions 
 in peer-to-peer exchange
  20. 20. Always explore! Always create! Always enjoy! • Financial transactions need not be a break from the ideals of ‘sharing’ • From the perspective of hosts in our study, the concept of ‘sharing’ encompasses social interactions 
 that are facilitated by the initial 
 financial exchange • Financial assurance structures can encourage decisions to try hosting, enabling valuable subsequent benefits Conclusions Acknowledgments Mobile Life VINN Excellence Centre / VINNOVA NSF: ACI-VOSS 1322270

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