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Airbnb's CEO says company logo looks like an ear

Despite yonic and phallic symbolism claims, Brian Chesky maintains the company logo is all clean -- just like its service.

Airbnb's logo, the "Bélo." Airbnb

When Airbnb launched its swirly pink upside-down heart logo in July, it prompted a lot of snickering. Some said it resembled a certain female body part, while others said it was more phallic.

Well, what does Airbnb CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky have to say about this?

"I think it's an ear... I guess it's whatever you're thinking about," Chesky said during the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco on Tuesday. "People obviously have quite dirty minds."

Chesky explained that dozens of people were involved in the design process for the logo -- something it calls the "Bélo." And, even though yonic and phallic concerns were raised, "we just fell in love with this symbol," he said.

The logo came with a major redesign to Airbnb's website and mobile app. With the revamp, the peer-to-peer home-rental service began marketing itself as a company where anyone can "belong." It was clear Airbnb was looking to distance itself from criticism that the service was being abused by hosts who operate multiple listings to make a quick buck.

Chesky also addressed these issues during TechCrunch Disrupt. He maintained that the majority of its hosts are regular folks that occasionally share their home. Chesky said Airbnb has cooperated with New York's attorney general to take action against "bad actors," while protecting its regular hosts. He also said he's in discussion with dozens of other cities to do the same.

"When cities give us subpoenas, we'll of course comply with them if they're not overly broad," Chesky said. "We've actually been taking down lots of multiple dwellings all over the world."

Airbnb has grown tremendously since it first launched in 2008. The company is now one of the highest-valued venture-backed companies in the world, with a valuation of $10 billion. Airbnb touts more than 800,000 listings in 190 countries. And, in the last five years, more than 4 million people have stayed in Airbnb rentals worldwide.