Rules target improper use of 'MLS' in company names, Web sites

Regional MLSs pass rules in Minnesota, Washington

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The Regional Multiple Listing Service of Minnesota, citing potential consumer confusion over access to MLS data, has passed a rule that restricts members’ use of the terms “multiple listing service” and “MLS” in Web site addresses and company names.

“Fundamentally what we’re trying to do is reinforce the distinction between what is advertising and what is the contract between brokers for compensation. There is a branding issue here,” said John W. Mosey, president of the Regional MLS, which has about 21,500 members and operates in Minnesota and Western Wisconsin.