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EUGENE, Ore. – Airbnb hosts will only see the initials of prospective renters from Oregon — and not their full names — until the reservation process is complete.

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According to a news release from the popular travel website, the two-year experiment will begin on Jan. 31. The change is designed to prevent discrimination against Black renters, KOIN-TV reported.

“Today, we are sharing an update to the way we display profile names of guests who are Oregon residents during the booking process,”Airbnb said in a news release. “Hosts will start seeing an Oregon guest’s initials in place of the guest’s first name until a booking request is confirmed. After a booking is confirmed, the guest’s name will appear.”

Airbnb’s announcement comes after a 2019 settlement of a lawsuit brought two years earlier by three Black plaintiffs — Pat Harrington, Carlotta Franklin and Ebony Price — who said the site allowed rental owners to discriminate against customers based on race, KGW-TV reported.

“This update is consistent with the voluntary settlement agreement we reached in 2019 with individuals in Oregon who raised concerns regarding the way guests’ names are displayed when they seek to book a listing,” Airbnb stated in its release. “As part of our ongoing work, we will take any learnings from this process and use them to inform future efforts to fight bias.”

Brian Mackerer, who rents homes in Oregon and Utah, said reviews, and not a person’s name, determine whether he will accept a potential guest.

“If it’s initials, that’s OK. I’m still going to default to their past reviews,” Mackerer told KEZI-TV. “I don’t know if it’s a good idea or a bad idea. I don’t think it’s going to have that big of an impact, to be honest. But I think it can’t hurt.”

Civil rights representatives and Airbnb said Thursday that they see the experimental policy as a research tool.

“If Black users face fewer incidents of discrimination under this system where you’re obscuring first names, then it should be applied nationwide,” Johnny Mathias, an official with Color of Change, told KOIN.

“Given that the impact of this change is unknown, the implementation will be limited” to Oregon, Airbnb spokesperson Liz DeBold Fusco said in a statement.