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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Branch office of 'No on F' vandalized, 'Fuck Airbnb'

Posted By on Thu, Oct 1, 2015 at 2:01 PM

  • Photo by Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez

Well, that escalated quickly.

A campaign office of the "No on F" campaign has been vandalized. No on F is advocating against a law introducing tighter regulations of Airbnb and other similar services in San Francisco. Suffice to say, the whole debate is getting heated. 

"Fuck AIRBNB" is scrawled across the windows of the Richmond District office, which sits along Geary Boulevard at Spruce.
Folks on both side of Proposition F are in a public slap-fest, escalated in no small part by Airbnb's jaw dropping $8 million campaign spending (and that's only so far). 

No on F's Campaign Manager Patrick Hannan said the Yes on F side is showing its true colors. 

"The proponents of Prop. F have gotten desperate," he told us, in a statement. "As we have all seen, the more people learn about Prop. F, the more they oppose it. Illegal vandalism and graffiti won't make this misguided proposition better."

We asked if he called SFPD to report the incident, and are awaiting his reply. 

When it comes to Proposition F, the stakes, as they say, are high.

On the one side is Airbnb, a multi-billion dollar company fighting to protect its most profitable customers, bosltered by small-time renters who fear (rightly or wrongly) that their Airbnb-fueled income source is threatened. On the other side are people who have suffered evictions from landlords who allegedly are converting entire apartments into full-time Airbnb hotels, critics say.

And as the San Francisco Examiner reported, the city's Budget and Legislative Analyst reported as much as 40 percent of available housing stock may be taken up by Airbnb rentals. 

Those stakes are the perfect recipe for anger, said Dale Carlson, a proponent of Proposition F from ShareBetterSF. 

"People feel strongly on both sides of the issue," he told us. "Nevertheless, vandalism like this is never appropriate."

Sara Shortt, another proponent of Prop. F, said San Franciscans' frustration with Airbnb is growing. 

"I think it clearly reflects the growing ire of residents of San Francisco who are angry that a corporate behemoth like Airbnb is not only stealing our precious housing stock, but buying the election," Shortt told SF Weekly.

Still, she says, "In the end, the campaigning shouldn’t be about attacks on entities or individuals, but on the policies themselves and educating voters about what needs to change."

Julia Carrie Wong contributed to this report. 

  • Photo by Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez
  • Photo by Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez

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