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Meet Airbnb’s Official Party Pooper, Who, In Two Years, Cut Down Partying by 55%

Naba Banerjee, responsible for Airbnb’s efforts to curb parties on its platform, has played a crucial role in developing AI systems to detect and prevent high-risk reservations associated with disruptive gatherings. Over the years, Airbnb has faced numerous challenges related to parties, and Banerjee’s role has been instrumental in tackling these issues.

To address the problem, Banerjee’s team developed an AI system that assesses hundreds of factors related to reservations, including user age, location, length of stay, and proximity to the listing. This system assigns a party risk score to each reservation, allowing Airbnb to either approve or block it based on predefined risk thresholds.

The introduction of heightened party defenses during holiday weekends, such as the Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve, has further enhanced Airbnb’s ability to prevent disruptive gatherings. In some cases, reservation requests are flagged for human review to assess party risk more comprehensively.

Banerjee’s efforts have yielded positive results, with party reports on the platform dropping significantly. The global rollout of her AI system in May led to more than 320,000 guests being blocked or redirected from making high-risk reservations on Airbnb.

Banerjee’s journey to combat Airbnb’s party problem began when she joined the company’s trust and safety team in 2020. She drew inspiration from personal experiences as a mother and her own daughter’s plans to book an Airbnb for a party, which prompted her to focus on developing effective algorithms to prevent such incidents.

Despite these accomplishments, Banerjee acknowledges that the world of trust and safety is ever-evolving, with bad actors continually adapting their strategies. Therefore, she and her team remain vigilant in monitoring and refining Airbnb’s AI systems to stay ahead of potential party planners and ensure a safer experience for all users.

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