Airbnb is deactivating accounts of white supremacists attending Virginia rally


Airbnb became aware of these users after examining posts on The Daily Stormer - a neo-Nazi site with tabs dedicated to "race war" and the "Jewish problem" - by people who said they using the service to book lodging to attend "Unite the Right", as well as larger venues to throw parties associated with the event. When through our background check processes or from input of our community we identify and determine that there are those who would be pursuing behaviour on the platform that would be antithetical to the Airbnb Community Commitment, we seek to take appropriate action including, as in this case, removing them from the platform.

Rally organizer Jason Kessler said the rally must take place in Emancipation Park, recently renamed from Lee Park, where the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee that has stood since the 1920s.

"If the city is justifying its relocation of the rally elsewhere based on the presence of counterdemonstrators, that constitutes an unconstitutional "hecklers" veto'", the letter states.

Last month, dozens of members of the Ku Klux Klan, the white supremacist group with a history of violent attacks on African Americans, rallied at Charlottesville's Confederate monument.

"This is outrageous and should be grounds for a lawsuit, " Kessler said on Monday night.

Those slated to attend include members of Identity Evropa, the National Socialist Movement, Vanguard America and the Traditionalist Workers Party.

Just how many attendees all the online attention will pull, however, has been guesswork. But city sources told the station that police are preparing for as many as 4,000 people - both supporters and protesters. However, their gathering might not go smoothly as they hoped it would. "At this point, this is a civil rights issue".

Mr Kessler argues the company's anti-discrimination policy was meant to keep renters from "denying service to individuals based on race, religion or other identity characteristics".

Jones read a prepared statement saying, "Based on information provided to me by law enforcement officials, the city has made a decision to approve Mr. Kessler's application for a permit to hold a demonstration on the day and at the times requested, provided that he use McIntire Park, rather than Emancipation Park, for the demonstration". "When First Amendment rights are at stake, the city should be transparent about the evidence and information underlying its action so that citizens can be sure that fears of overcrowding are not simply a pretext for censorship and meet the requirement for proof that a compelling government interest underlies its decision".