How Airbnb apologized for its way-too-snarky San Francisco ads

Be the first to comment

CMO Jonathan Mildenhall also posted his own apology for the campaign on Thursday.

Airbnb has been apologizing to consumers and employees since Wednesday night for ads placed around San Francisco that were critical of schools and libraries.

The ads — one of which read, "Dear public library system, we hope you use some of the $12 million in hotel taxes to keep the library open later" — will be taken down immediately, according to Airbnb.

An Airbnb spokesperson told The Huffington Post this week that the campaign’s goal was to highlight the hotel tax contributions made by the company’s guests and hosts, but it took "the wrong tone."

Jonathan Mildenhall, the company’s CMO, also tweeted an apology on Thursday immediately following a Twitter post by Airbnb.

The company is also saying sorry to its employees, according to an internal email obtained by CNET on Thursday. Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky wrote to staffers: "Yesterday I heard from so many of you about how embarrassed and deeply disappointed you were in us. You were right to feel this way."

Chesky has not tweeted about the incident, and the company has not posted any updates on its Facebook page or blog.

Despite the apologies, media members, communicators and marketers have posted about the PR blunder on social media.

This article first appeared on


The latest work, news, advice, comment and analysis, sent to you every day

register free

Campaign Jobs

Thousands of jobs across advertising, creative, marketing and media

Trending on Campaign