I posted this yesterday but it really should have gone in its own thread:
The MLS isn’t just “what sold and when.”
If you think about it, all the information is available to anybody. It’s just that the MLS stores and categorizes the information in a particularly useful way. Now, since the information is available, why should the database that categorizes the free information be free to everyone?
I don’t think it should. This is a private trade group’s search tool and publishing tool. It now works pretty well, and only after years of trial and error, input, quarterly fees, etc.
Like, if the public wants to know what sold, then OK. Let them be able to see what sold. (Even though other databases also will share this information, such as cleanoffer.) But the radius search or polygonal search — why should a trade group have to share technology?
It’s pretty weird. People don’t really get it, I think.
Or, and I hear this argument frequently too, “But you can use the MLS to view sales by districts and we can’t.”
“Districts” — districts are nomenclature created by the SFAR. In reality they are neighborhoods. Yet it’s an unfair monopoly that a private trade group categorizes free information with nomenclature it created?
I don’t see people clamoring for unlimited access to Yahoo or Google’s publishing tools, nomenclature, or statistics. Aren’t they basically the only games around these days? Isn’t that unfair?
Capitalism is unfair. And these aren’t even monopolies. The MLS is no monopoly. Cooperating assocations can access one another’s data. So can any individual who joins and pays for it. True monopolies don’t let anyone in.
I dunno. I think people just like looking at stuff on the ‘net.
It isn’t as if agents are privy to how much a particular property is going to sell for while it’s in contract very often. And that’s what people really want to know!
— Kenneth Kohlmyer a k a der fluj