Airbnb Patents Software That Judges “Narcissism” & “Psychopathy” Of Users

Chiang Mai, Thailand - September 4, 2016: Apple iPhone 6s plus with Airbnb application on the screen. Airbnb is a website for people to list, find, and rent lodging.
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

Airbnb has confirmed it owns the rights to software that judges the “narcissism” or “psychopathy” of people who use the app.

The software scans user’s online presence to predict whether or not they are trustworthy, trawling through internet posts and social media activity to see if the person has any traits of “neuroticism” or “Machiavellianism”.

In a statement to Business Insider, an Airbnb spokesperson confirmed that it owns the patent.

However, it said it isn’t currently using all of the software’s screening methods as outlined in the software patent filed last year.

“As with any other company, there are a number of patents we file, ranging from searching listings to automating booking availability, and it does not mean we necessarily implement all or part of what’s in them,” said the spokesperson.

While Airbnb’s website says it uses “predictive analytics and machine learning” to identify any dubious users, it is unclear what aspects of the screening software are currently being used.


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