Lieing, rule breaking guest leaves three star

So I don’t understand what is new about Airbnb’s retaliatory policy.

I read this at Airbnb: " For example, guests should not write biased or inauthentic reviews as a form of retaliation against a Host who enforces a policy or rule."

But, given that Airbnb does not evaluate the truth of allegations, how does Airbnb know that a review is a form of retaliation? It cannot simply be that the Host states that the guest has violated a rule since Airbnb does not evaluate the truthfulness of the allegations made. Plus, then, every review could be taken down if the Host simply alleges that the guest violated a rule.

If there is messaging on the platform that extorts the Host, then of course Airbnb has the evidence it needs, but the rule against extortion etc was there before.

So, I’m wondering – do you know? – what’s really changed? What’s new in this ‘new’ Airbnb policy that would remove retaliatory reviews?

1 Like

No, the wording is typical Airbnb. It doesn’t say anywhere that they “will” remove a retaliation review, it says that hosts can request for it to be removed. Lot of good that does- you dispute it and some CS rep says they won’t delete it. Same as always.

@HostAirbnbVRBO It doesn’t make much sense to me, either, nor does it seem like anything has really changed. The only clear cut way to determine if it’s a revenge review, as far as I can think of, is if a host has pages of 5 star reviews saying the place was immaculate, and the guest leaves a 1 star review saying it was filthy, sort of thing. Or you have to call Airbnb when a guest does anything wrong, no matter how minor, just in case they decide to leave you a retaliation review because you reminded them once to take their shoes off in the house.

It would make much more sense to just allow hosts to have one review a year,of their choice, removed, without having to plead their case. But as we know, Airbnb’s decision makers are short on common sense.

Or this was just some PR move- "You know, hosts are going to be really upset that we’re removing all the IB requirements- we’d better distract them with a bogus review removal ‘update’ ".


Massive thanks to Muddy and others on this forum who bought my attention to Airbnb’s recent update regarding retalitory reviews, which I had not been aware of. Big thanks also to the person who sent me a link to that update.
I wrote in for a third time today, quoting, in particular, one of the two examples given by Air on the topic. The example given was pretty much what happened in my situation. I had a message and a text back within half an hour, telling me the review had been removed! Happy days!


I just read the link you provided above. Thank you.

When I Googled airbnb retaliatory review it took me to a different page, which was less helpful.

From this page I am extrapolating from their one example that IF the Host has made a complaint or request for reimbursement for violation of House rule on the platform, and the Guest review is negative, that Airbnb will more likely remove that review as retaliatory.

I’m reluctant to say this but there’s also the ‘opportunity’ for a Host who feels that a bad review is coming, perhaps from a delinquency on the part of the Host, to make a complaint on the platform in anticipation of a negative review for which the Host can now seek removal based on retaliation. We’ve seen guests do this; Hosts, of course, can be bad actors as well. I suppose that this is nothing new as well.

It does seem like Airbnb is in a tough spot. Reviews are important to both Host and Guest, but much more so for the Host for whom this might be if not a living, at least business income. So Hosts are incentivized to invest energy in the process.

Evaluating a review as retaliatory requires judgment, which is a more expensive skill to hire and train for. Your comment that the pattern of Host reviews should be part of the process ( perhaps a central part) by which these judgments are made strikes me as a good one.

In my opinion Airbnb needs to think this through more carefully, especially for new Hosts. On the one hand new Hosts might well make mistakes resulting in negative reviews that can cost them dearly. On the other hand, a retaliatory review or just a review from a guest who doesn’t understand the system can unfairly hurt the new Host. Either way, that new Host seems to me to be a special case and one warranting some hands-on attention, including continued support after the setup as a new Host, per @Annet3176 (I hope I captured your sentiment accurately on the need for continued support).

I also like your idea of a Host being able to remove one review per year – no questions asked. Simple, fair, easy.

You captured my sentiment correctly. New hosts are so new they don’t know, what they don’t know. Yes they can turn to the Airbnb Community Center & Airbnb facilitated Facebook groups but responses are slow when you need help now!

Today I chatted with a 5/22 new host in Arizona about options for complying with the new highly restrictive STR rules effective 1/1/23 AND (not related) guests not leaving reviews & what to do about the one retaliatory review she received (guest’s parents/locals afternoon visit to enjoy the pool approved; dog visiting declined. Of course they brought the dog. The guest did not take it well when the host notified her she saw the dog).