We accept: the constitution of Airbnb

Nofar Sheffi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper investigates the transformation of Airbnb as a platform for a more general reflection on the technological and technical constitution of domains, political platforms, and subjectivities. Part I explores the various (juridical and digital) technologies and techniques employed by the service provider to ‘fight discrimination and bias’, as well as to encode a world where everyone can ‘Belong Anywhere’. Part II draws on social systems theory and Gunther Teubner’s societal constitutionalism, rethinking the processes analysed in Part I in terms of auto-constitutionalisation. The auto-constitutionalisation of Airbnb, Part III suggests, instantiates the emergence of a new grammar of political action, epitomised by the Airbnb Terms of Service agreement, and a new generalisable mode of subjectivation: the standard formation of subjects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)484-520
Number of pages37
JournalTransnational Legal Theory
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Airbnb
  • constitution
  • social contracts
  • standard forms
  • Terms of Service agreements


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