The "Sharing" Economy: Issues Facing Platforms, Participants, and Regulators A Federal Trade Commission Workshop
The Hollywood Bungalow Retired Court Stenographer, Actor, Writer A One Bedroom/One Bath 1923 Spanish Four blocks from Sunset and Vine One-half mile to the Pantages Theatre ArcLight Movie Theatre just up the street Restaurants Everywhere: From McDonald's to the W Hotel Hello, FTC Committee Members, I have been a host for Airbnb.com beginning in 2013, when I fulfilled a childhood dream and left Hollywood and returned to the mountains and the lake of my childhood (90 miles east) to work as a Public Service Employee/ranger for the summer. I was able to accept the job because through Airbnb my Hollywood house could be rented short term. At age 63 I became the "gate lady" that I always wanted to be. I had three separate guests that summer. I returned home to clean and prepare for the next guest on my days off. The guests took great care of my bungalow just as I do! A lovely television writer and producer from Dublin stayed for a week as part of his ComicCon (something or other) trip and we still keep in contact. When I visited Dublin in October of 2013, Carl and I actually RAN into each other on the street! This world is getting so small, isn't it? A married couple, both recent graduates of NYU, drove cross country with their two cats in cages and stayed a month while they searched for their permanent apartment, both having new jobs here in Los Angeles. A delightful young couple from Milan, Italy, stayed for a week and left the house just as it was before arriving. They also left the refrigerator full of goodies! You see, on Airbnb.com, when someone inquires about booking, I am able to "check them out" through their Facebook page, Linkedin, and recommendations given by other hosts. I am opening my private home to them, so I do get to pick and choose a bit. No picture, no link-no booking. During this year's terrible winter in upper New York, a young man who lives close by in a one-bedroom apartment with his girlfriend treated his Pop to a three-week stay here in the sun. Everyone was able to have their privacy and to walk back and forth to visit! I understand that Pops never cooked in my kitchen, as he loves to eat out! I moved in with my sister and the rent money went toward our plane tickets to Rome, a trip my sister has planned to celebrate her remission from cancer. We leave for Italy in June, and on June 10th a cast member of the national touring company of Phantom of the Opera, Pantages Theatre June 11-Aug 2nd, moves into my bungalow. He will be able to walk to work! The Airbnb rent money is the reason I can pay my fair share of expenses for a villa in Umbria, my sister's long-held dream. We return in time to catch Phantom before it leaves town! So you can see that through the ability to share my home on a short-term basis, at the age of 67 I am able to grant myself a few wishes, while granting a few "strangers" theirs. I am truly the fairy godmother who can turn her fun little house into someone else's castle.