San Francisco appears to have voted down Proposition F, which would place new limits on short-term rentals like Airbnb. Early results suggested the measure had failed by a margin of just under 14,000 votes, in a result that had been widely expected after polls showed little momentum. Airbnb was the chief sponsor of the anti-F movement, spending more than $8 million in an effort to stop it from being passed. And despite dozens of protesters storming company headquarters yesterday in an effort to link the company to rising housing costs, a majority of San Francisco voters apparently did not agree with them.
Unofficial results showed that more than 55 percent of voters said no to Proposition F, which would have limited short-term rentals of housing units to 75 days a year, required Airbnb users to submit quarterly reports detailing when they were at home, and made it a misdemeanor to unlawfully list a house as a short-term rental. While San Francisco is not one of Airbnb's biggest cities by number of hosts, the measure has been widely watched for its potential to inspire copycat measures in other places around the world. It was also symbolically important given that Airbnb is based in San Francisco — a fact that inspired an ill-fated ad campaign that the company took down almost as soon as it went up.
Airbnb has scheduled a briefing with reporters in the morning to discuss the election's results.