Airbnb is a website for people to list, find, and rent lodging/accommodation. According to wikipedia.com it has over 1,500,000 listings in 34,000 cities and 190 countries. Basically, it allows for a person from let’s say Argentina to come over to Iceland and live in a typical I Icelandic household by renting it of strangers. The ideal behind it seems to be the concept of getting even closer to the environment you’re exploring by integrating yourself in the ecosystem of it’s inhabitants. However, it is also a nice way to make money and typically a nice way to save it too.
I like airbnb.com as an example of an online community mostly because it is one of the few that exist simultaneously online and offline. It does not thrive on anonymity like many other examples of online communities; Tumblr and Twitter, but rather it is entirely dependant on it’s users meeting up in real life. However, it does make me wonder whether the community like the one represented in the image above is not an entirely manufactured concept, in this case used as a marketing strategy. Surely the concept of a community here is used very loosely as it really only works if you consider these people being bound by a common interests: travelling, culture, money and this website’s way of combining the three. One may however very rightly expect a little more from it all. However, as online communities go this one is a fine example and a very popular one too. There is definitely something cool about being able to say you belong to it.