According to Wikipedia, it is:
...the largest hospitality exchange network, with approximately 1.4 million members in 231 countries and territories...We’ve had quite a few visitors through this service, and we’ve embraced them as graciously as possible. We shared meals, laughs, everything. By the end of it, they too have fallen in love with the Land. (How could you not?) Yet I realized today that while they may get a free bed and a free meal or two out of the deal, its Lumière that really benefits.
After registering, which is free, members have the option of providing very detailed information and pictures of themselves and of the sleeping accomodation being offered, if any...
Members looking for accomodation can search for hosts using several parameters such as age, location, sex, and activity level. Home stays are entirely consensual between the host and guest, and the duration, nature, and terms of the guest's stay are generally worked out in advance to the convenience of both parties. No monetary exchange takes place except under certain circumstances (e.g. the guest may compensate the host for food). After using the service, members can leave a noticable reference about their host or guest.
Instead of or in addition to accommodation, members also offer to provide guide services or travel-related advice. Couchsurfing also provides editable travel guides and forums where members may seek travel partners or advice. Couchsurfing is also focused on "social networking" and members organize activities such as camping trips, bar crawls, meetings, and sporting events.
The site also features a searchable database of hundreds of upcoming events organized by couchsurfing members...
This can be a lonely place, even for those who cherish solitude. The near-constant flow of visitors adds new energy and life to the Land, and it’s incredible to learn from the myriad of perspectives. Plus, couch surfers are basically free labor.
I tease. Kind of. I realized today that each has left a mark on the Land, contributed to Lumière in some way. One helped me with a super clean of the kitchen. Another hung a shelf in the storeroom. Yesterday we had two surfers, and they climbed with Martanda to the top of the windmill to set it free from its cyclone lock. Today Neo is going above and beyond—working side by side in levelling the dirt, digging holes, and doing whatever else boys do with tools and a forest to play with. While we went out shopping, he painted the storeroom. And Dean and Muthu—while not couch surfers, they too have busily built a duck house, spruced up the capsule, and made more meals than any of us can count.
With all these guests, Lumière will become a Land of natural luxury.
So please: come, couch surfers, come! Come to Lumière!