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VOWs: Power to (understand) the people

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Bill Chee, a former National Association of Realtors president, said he worked in the real estate business for 44 years, and "37 of the years were wasted." "I was spending all of this time with (property) data" over the decades, said Chee, president of Prudential Locations in Hawaii, though in 2002 there was a realization to "start doing more to learn about people," as real estate is inherently a people business. "It doesn't revolve around property anymore, but it does revolve around us knowing people." Speaking during "From Listing Data to People Data: The Next Challenge in VOWs and MLS" last week at the Inman News Real Estate Connect conference in San Francisco, Chee said that rules governing Virtual Office Web sites (VOWs) miss the boat. The U.S. Justice Department and National Association of Realtors agreed to settle an antitrust lawsuit in May 2008, signing off on amended rules for VOWs -- which are We...