Industry News

Lawyer pursues real estate ballot initiative

Initiative would create statewide 'open MLS' in California

David Barry, a San Francisco lawyer specializing in antitrust lawsuits against real estate industry groups, has filed a ballot initiative with the California Attorney General's Office that seeks to establish a statewide residential multiple listing service that is "open to the public and realty agents alike," according to an announcement this week.   If established, the "open MLS" would likely serve over 170,000 users, making it three times larger than any other MLS in the nation.   The announcement stated that the initiative seeks to guarantee that the public will have "free access to all sale and rental listings, along with the right to freely download the entire MLS with no copyright restrictions."   MLSs serve as data hubs for real estate property listings information and other agent-specific information that is relevant to property listings. There are more than 800 MLSs in the United States.   The proposal comes at a time when state real estate industry groups ...