Industry News

NAR backs down from policy to restrict online listings

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In response to U.S. Justice Department antitrust concerns, the National Association of Realtors has withdrawn a previous controversial online listings policy that allowed brokers to hold back property listings from select competitor Web sites. NAR instead has adopted a new policy, which does not allow for a selective restriction of online listings. The U.S. Justice Department's antitrust division launched an investigation of the old policy nearly two years ago. The Justice Department disagreed with the provision that enabled brokers to withhold home listings from Web sites they did not approve of, but NAR had insisted that brokers should retain control of where listings are displayed. The new policy, known as Internet Listings Display, reaches a compromise and does not enable selective restriction as was previously allowed under the now-defunct Virtual Office Web site policy, NAR said. "The policy treats all MLS members equally yet respects the rights of property owners and their li...