Cliff Peskin's has written about "Why doesn't Century 21 want more people viewing its real estate listings?" and about Century 21 suing Rogers Communications Inc regarding over its website Zoocasa (source: Financial Post).
Listing data by REALTORS® is up loaded on MLS® system directly through their regional boards. MLS®, which is a trademark, thus enables members of the public to see the information protected under strict data integrity guidelines. Century 21 REALTORS, like other licensed REALTORS, are part of this trademark. Any business would and should protect its trademarks - wouldn't you?
The writer's claim that CREA and Century 21 have an "iron like grip...thereby any individual looking to purchase a home must go through them" doesn't hold much ground. If one reviews the flow of any real estate transaction, the answer to this will become obvious. Once the Seller has retained a REALTOR® to exclusively protect its rights, then no matter where the buyer sees the information about the house, the buyer has to come through the REALTOR® representing the Seller. This is for the protection of the Sellers since REALTORS® are professionals safeguarding the Seller interests.
There is strong possibility that by scraping and aggregation of the listing data, a loss of control occurs and the information might be misquoted or misrepresented, thereby putting the Seller’s interest at risk. Moreover, isn't the data on MLS aggregated anyways? Why is there a need for scraping it and aggregating it again, other than that the company doing so wants to scrape some advertising dollars from such websites. That is my opinion. – Jagdeep Singh is a Century 21 REALTOR® and the Team Leader of the Residential Club at Century 21 New Star Realty Inc., a flourishing Brokerage based in Toronto.