SAN FRANCISCO—In a move hailed as a bold and innovative step for the company, officials at Airbnb told reporters Wednesday they had begun testing a new feature that would permit Black guests to find lodging through the platform. “Since we started back in 2008, only white people have been able to secure bookings with our Airbnb hosts, but if our beta tests are successful, Black people should soon be able to do the same,” company spokesperson Carol Leroux said of the new function, which reportedly took years and millions of dollars to develop, as software engineers sought to accomplish what many believed was impossible. “Once the feature is up and running, Black people can stay any place Airbnb operates, with the exception of more exclusive locations such as the Bay Area, Manhattan, Boston, and Seattle, where there is a lot more money at stake. For legal reasons, Black guests will still need to check a box confirming they are Black, but when they do, they will have access to all our rooms, apartments, and houses, so long as they promise not to take anything. Each rental will also include a 5% surcharge for being Black.” Airbnb officials went on to confirm their platform still lacked the technology required to remove the thousands of hosts who install cameras in their toilets.