Airbnb wants you to stay in stranger's homes -- this, we know. But in a series of tweets and an odd YouTube video ad released Tuesday, it seems Airbnb is trying to get its message across in a new, albeit creepier way. Perhaps surprisingly, the ad caused the Internet to collectively freak out.
In the recently released video above, a tiny, adorable toddler stumbles to the door as Angela Bassett asks the audience seemingly existential questions. "Is Mankind? Are we good? Go see," says Bassett, before getting into the scarier heavier questions. "Go look through their windows, so you can understand their views. Sit at their tables so you can share their tastes. Sleep in their beds, so you may know their dreams. Go see. And find out just how kind the he's and she's of this mankind are."
It's trying so hard to be a sweet message, but will sleeping in someone's sheets really allow you to see their dreams? What if they have nightmares?
Airbnb then tweeted out its "Is Mankind" comments, which, somewhat understandably, began alarming folks on Twitter:
We asked Airbnb to shed light on its approach in the hopes that we were simply misinterpreting the company's message.
Maria Rodriguez, Head of Global Consumer Communications at Airbnb, said the campaign "explores the kindness of man ... because when we trust in the kindness of our fellow man, we discover that the world isn’t such a scary place after all."
To Airbnb's credit, it appears that this campaign really is well-intentioned -- it's about kindness, after all. But there's something about the tone of the ad -- with an unattended child in a poorly lit space -- that make us feel like something bad is about to happen. In the meantime, we'll keep renting out our homes and apartments and try not to think about strangers attempting to know our dreams.
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