The Most Talked About Business Moves of 2012

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Start-ups Step Up After Sandy

This year Airbnb emerged as a champion of the sharing economy. Last year’s ugly headlines about homes left looking like Keith Moon stayed there have been largely forgotten. Instead, the company became a hero for waiving fees for hosts and guests in areas affected by Hurricane Sandy and creating a platform for those offering free housing in wake of the disaster. Sandy was also a big moment for Instagram, which experienced more than its share of big moments this year (including a $1 billion acquisition by Facebook). Users posted 800,000 photos of the property-gobbling storm and its aftermath, creating a Twitter-challenging enabler of citizen journalism and a new way to chronicle history.