Airbnb says its service is better for everyone when guests stay in properties where someone actually lives rather than an illegal hotel operated by an anonymous landlord. Even if the resident is absent during the guest's stay, it makes for a higher level of interaction and personalization of experience. To that end, it's committed to encouraging hosts to operate on that model, and will share anonymized data with cities to prove it's following through. But "ensuring hosts agree to a policy" is not the same thing as "ensuring hosts abide by a policy." Is the company prepared to do anything about hosts who agree not to operate illegal hotels but do so anyway -- use data science to sniff them out and suspend their accounts, for instance? An Airbnb spokesman declined to go into specifics. "Our experience is that our community is very good about making decisions in the best interest of their communities," he said, in an email. Get the full story at