Exact dates of previous house sits...to show or not to show?

Greetings THS Members,

THS has undergone several changes since my short (13 months) time on this site.

One change that I would like to see, is POST REVIEW, for sitters/owners exact dates to be hidden. For example, on AirBnB, all the places I have stayed simply has a month, year and a duration of time. It no longer lists the exact dates. I like this change. See below for some specific examples. Four are from my own AirBnB profile and three are from THS. These are accessed publicly…without passwords for members only with both websites. AirBnB is a little more vague which to me, adds privacy.

See the difference?

I would like THS to adopt this change. What does everyone else have to say?







Not related to your post, but how do you find your number score on Airbnb?

I think it’s helpful for homeowners to see if it was a short sit (few days )or a long one (few weeks /months )

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Greetings @Voyager,

That is the AirBnB host, not mine. Guests are simply given a star rated…if it is averaged, it wouldn’t say the same way. However, I only have 5 stars reviews given by hosts…so perhaps it does for guests and mine just doesn’t show it.

Check AirBnB policies to be certain.

Greetings @Silversitters ,

I do agree with you. However, I don’t like the exact dates being known to strangers on the internet without passwords. For example, in one of the pictures (last one) with my own instead of the exact dates being listed, I am simply wishing for;
Ann Arbor, MI, A Few days in April, 2024
Longmont, CO, almost a month in March, 2024

If this information were available to members only, I wouldn’t be asking for opinions.

I am not sure how clear I was…

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It’s always bothered me that the exact dates are shown. I think it should just show the month and length of sit.

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As a sitter, it doesn’t bother me at all if it shows the exact dates. I understand you asking the question from a privacy perspective but not quite sure of the reason - can you elaborate on that? Are you concerned about people knowing when your away or some other reason? Not quite sure I understand.

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Greetings @Globetrotter,

No one on this platform should have to ask, “Why is privacy not so important?” Your response reads as such. You may not value your privacy the way I value mine or perhaps not at all, but I value mine. I also value other peoples privacy.

But since you asked, I can provide some reasons. One reason is leaving breadcrumbs. Have you heard of that term in the technological sense? If not, Google is a powerful tool. A second reason, have you had a stalker, meaning another human trying to follow you, or recreate a pattern of behavior? Have you ever been the defendant in an unjust lawsuit and had a bailiff trying to serve you papers? Granted, THS is likely not used for these specific purposes but when a platform allows an exact date of a previous sit, you can begin to paint a picture. These are just two examples, I can name 10 more if needed but that isn’t necessary.

I live in the USA. In the USA, when you lose your privacy, you don’t get it back, even with a lot of money. As one example, just ask Jeff Bezos about his selfies…he barely escaped that ordeal. No one on this platform is a billionaire, the measures normal people must take when identify is compromised take a lot more time, value and money compared to a family with the means of Jeff Bezos.

My reason is simple as that, simple privacy. The less breadcrumbs we leave, the better. If THS instituted a simple policy that major corporations that do business across the world adopt, I don’t see why it is so unreasonable to have a conversation about it and implement a minor and simple change. THS amplifies our bread crumbs by posting exact dates, not to mention the cities where we have stayed. My issue, this information doesn’t even require a password.

Little things and changes make the biggest differences sometimes in our life, for better or for worse. If you can name me a disadvantage of being a little more vague versus exact, that may work for you. However, you are also free to leave your exact dates of travel on a review of a HO if you would like as well. But why would you do that?

It does not harm anyone if THS adopted the polices already in place among world companies, however reconstructing exact movements of people, it can potentially do damage.

But if AirBnB, VBRO and Google now take small steps to protect your privacy as you have seen from my screenshots (I only posted my AirBnB ones), they must have many more reasons than we know. Those decisions happened within the past 9 months or so, it is telling.

To your credit, you would like a HO to know how long you have stayed at a previous sit (s) and I agree, that has value. If I am applying for a six month sit but my longest was weekend, that is information a HO should know prior to agreeing to a sit. But, if AirBnB can relay that directly to hosts on platforms by shielding YOUR information, so can THS. I agree that is helpful to know, but generic language gets the point across just as well. A night, a few nights, a month, over a month, 5-6 months…those are good enough descriptions.

Sometimes, less is more.

But, for those that would prefer exact dates are shown on your previous travel…feel free to write them in. However, I would also be satisfied if THS required a sign in by registered members to view such data, my issue is, it is on the open internet.

I hope that makes sense. I am an advocate for privacy, in case you can’t tell!

Thank you for asking.

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I was thinking about this change too for a long time! Especially since our profiles are open for everyone! i think the exact dates should be visible to those i applied for a sit. Everyone else should see month and year.

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You need to give up privacy to participate in this exchange. The exchange needs information: photos, reviews, dates, etc. And admitting unknown guests that roam the home without your presence.

If that is a problem, there are other possibilities to get accommodation or to arrange pet care.

Anyway, the sensitive dates are the future dates in listings of the HO.

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Agree future dates for HO listings are the sensitive ones. I have no idea how people might abuse the fact that in e.g. 2021 I sat from X April to Y April in place Z…

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@Globetrotter As a very private person, I don’t see any reason why anyone in the world should be able to see the exact dates and places that I’ve traveled. Detailed information should at least be limited to members. Why does information that is not needed have to be shared? We do have to give up some privacy to participate in this exchange but THS should take steps to limit the information that is available, particularly to non-members. I’m considering stopping sitting entirely due to the amount of information that is shared publicly by THS.

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Because THS needs to show what is here to attract new members.

The really don’t need to show specific dates or our complete profiles. They could have more limited information available to non-members.

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My question wasn’t intended to read as “why is privacy not so important”. I was just curious to the reason and you’ve elaborated and clarified that - thank you. Now I know that privacy is very important to you and I understand that.

Valid point - thanks for sharing your viewpoint

Wow. I am so glad I do not live in fear.

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Well this has made me think… We are not full time sitters and have a home that could be unoccupied when we sit. I agree with other that future dates are the most important, as they could show when my home would be unoccupied. For this reason I never post holiday pics on Facebook until I am home.

We do a few repeat sits. I we have sat for the same homeowner over the same holiday period for the past 2 years, someone might conclude that I would be away again at the same time the following year.

Showing a length of time and a month would be a good compromise to provide more privacy.

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Yes, that shows in our calendars. But it would need quite a bit of sleuthing to find out the sitter’s address.

Having been a pet sitter with THS for 14 years, this is the first time I have ever come across this issue.
As members have said, it doesn’t post future dates so I really think there is no need to be overly concerned

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