Case in Point: What Big Aggregators Don’t Want Agents/Brokers to Know
Late last week, I published a post on the VHT Blog entitled, “Separating Facts from Fluff: What Big Aggregators Still Aren’t Telling Agents/Brokers.” I also wrote a similar post on REALTOR.com’s blog in response to the company’s statements after Edina Realty announced it would stop sending listings to the aggregator site. I have to admit I was surprised when REALTOR.com actually posted my comments a few hours later. After all, I was taking the company to task for treating brokers unfairly on their site, and for hiding their questionable practices from real estate professionals. Realtor.com Editor in Chief, Scott Garner, provided a response to my post, restating the company’s position but politely thanking me for joining the conversation. Here is his comment:
Thanks for your comment. We believe that open discussion and input on issues like this are vital. I’d like to just highlight a point that we feel speaks to the main gist of your concerns. Realtor.com offers brokers a choice as to how they want their listings displayed. If a broker with a basic listing on the site doesn’t want to participate in the Co-Brokerage product, they can quickly and easily opt out. Realtor.com doesn’t display competing broker branding or contact details on another broker’s listing.
At Move, we understand that some folks are going to disagree with us, and we respect that. But we also think that the investments we’ve made in developing ListHub into an even more user friendly experience for brokers, the security practices we’ve put into place on Realtor.com that help ensure your valuable listing content isn’t scraped, and the way our day-to-day Realtor.com operations respect brokers rights demonstrate that we are committed to serving our customers in a responsive and industry-friendly way.
Thanks again for joining in the conversation. We appreciate your views.
Well, apparently the higher-ups at REALTOR.com don’t share Garner’s open-minded attitudes toward dissenting viewpoints. About an hour later, my post was suddenly removed from the site. POOF!! Like it was never there.
No wonder brokers are turning their backs on big aggregators. Edina is one of many top realtors that are speaking out, asking questions and taking a stand against third parties for taking their listings without paying them and then demanding money from them for leads and biasing search results.
Edina is raising legitimate issues that are being discussed by concerned brokers just about everywhere these days. Does REALTOR.com actually think it can hide the controversy from public view as it tries to stuff the genie back into the bottle?
At VHT, we’re unapologetically on the side of brokers, and we promise to fairly and openly air all of the digital marketing and technology issues impacting real estate professionals today. It’s a pivotal moment for the industry, and open discussion is critical. I hope you’ll stayed tuned to the VHT Blog for all the facts, information and insight you won’t get from third parties like REALTOR.com that would prefer that you not read the fine print while they keep taking money from your pockets.