Glen Roberts Jr. over at Inman News reports on a paper written by Brian Larson, a Minneapolis lawyer, about the sorts of risks multiple listing services are taking by signing contracts with Zillow et al.
The main points seem to be:
- Signing anything without negotiating is bad form
- Even though the listings are free, there are costs associated with setting up a data feed (don’t I know it)
- All legal risks associated with publishing at the sites tends to default to the MLS
- The question of when will a listing be removed is murky and often undefined, leading to a listing remaining on a site long after it becomes inactive
- Some contracts grant the sites “almost complete control” of the data
- Potential brand risks
- Promises such as providing data that is “free from defects” is boilerplate in many of the contracts, something that the MLS can’t guarantee.
I would have liked to see a little more meat in this but I haven’t been able to locate the original paper.