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NAR Just Says “NO” to real**genius.com

realtorlogoApparently the use of the word Re***or in any fashion can be shunned for almost any reason- especially trademark violations.  NAR has contacted us and asked us to formally end the use of this domain & I would assume any variation of the word ***ltor even though I am a member.

  • rea****genius.com was designed to speak about the genius of real****, not my personal genius.
  • the site is about technology, the influx of technology, and inspiring positive conversation

I will comply fully with NAR because I see no reason not to.  It is what it is- we’re just everyday folks with every day lives.

It was a lot of fun while it lasted as the site has won several awards judged by its peers and is proud of that fact. 

We’ve not decided whether to move it, or just /close the domain.  More to follow in the following days.

UPDATE:

  • please update your blogroll to reflect the correct url https://agentgenius.com  we would certainly appreciate it.  Thanks.
  • The old site will continue to redirect here for 3 months per NAR

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Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network. Before AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation has received the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular offline events. He does not venture into the spotlight often, rather he believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits and develops, so he gives all credit to those he's empowered.

32 Comments

32 Comments

  1. Jay Thompson

    October 2, 2007 at 11:29 am

    I say transfer it to NARGenius.com — which was available until I bought it seconds ago. I’ll gladly transfer it to you, no charge.

    If the NAR whines about that, tell them to take it up with the National Association of Rocketry, Nucleic Acids Research, NAR-anon, the hip-hop group NaR, or the Merrill Lynch S&P midcap 400 index fund that trades on the Amex under the symbol NAR…

  2. Michael Cook

    October 2, 2007 at 12:18 pm

    While we may not agree on many things, I do think you run a great site. I try to read you fairly often and I too think it would be a shame to shut your doors. I think you certainly take the high and probably smart road in not bothering to fight the NAR, but I think you should continue at a new site. I would be happy to contribute a couple of NAR bashing articles to boot if you need to get the content level up. Good luck and keep writing.

  3. Kelley Koehler

    October 2, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    Wow, took them a while to find you. I had to shut down several of my domains with “realtor” in them, got probably the exact same form email message you did. Bye bye tucsonrealtor.com… (such a beautiful domain). Unfortunately, we were stupid and let our ownership expire instead of just not using it. Now some other guy *from my own company* is using it. I’ve let my broker know it’s a big no-no, but there’s been no action on that so far. ‘Tis a bummer, but I wasn’t about to take on NAR.

  4. Joseph Ferrara.sells

    October 2, 2007 at 2:35 pm

    Funny, this morning I posted whether realtor had become generic and how others could use it if the services were different. I’d say you had a fighting chance for use as a blog site
    https://tinyurl.com/2sd9ol

    email me

  5. Shailesh Ghimire

    October 2, 2007 at 3:26 pm

    This is interesting. I’m not a “Realtor” (opps please don’t fine me), so I’m a bit unaware of the sway of NAR. But I didn’t realize they have so much leeway over the word. Hasn’t the word entered the public domain yet? Can you trademark a word like that? I’m curious. Why do “Realtors” (opps I did it again) put up with this? What is the benefit to you?

  6. Jeff Brown

    October 2, 2007 at 4:09 pm

    First, they spend the last half dozen decades proving to the world they’re as valuable as tits on a bull. Then they make fools of themselves with transparently insulting PR moves.

    Now this? It’s like Grandpa used to say – “You just can’t make up stuff this stupid.”

  7. Chris Lengquist

    October 2, 2007 at 7:10 pm

    I knew the use of realtor was in technical violation but didn’t much care. I figured you knew and didn’t care, either.

    May I make a suggestion?

    Alan Shore with Crane, Poole & Schmitt loves a good crusade. Though his fees are never discussed I believe he has made exceptions before. 🙂

  8. B. R.

    October 2, 2007 at 10:00 pm

    Chris, minicooperrealtor is a violation.
    Kelley, that sucks.
    Shailesh- it has entered the public domain in my opinion.
    Jeff, no doubt- but what can you do…
    Jay, I do not even emphasize realtor on my business card or our website- that’s how much the word realtor matters to my business. I also will never in a million years get a GRI next to my name, nor do I give a rats rear about their so-called benes. In my opinion, nar is nothing to me if they cannot get health care for its members or real benefits like group life. They’re nothing to me but mls access and pretty soon mls access will be worthless too.
    Maybe I am a little sentitive right now, but honestly, my give-a-shitter done gave out.

  9. Jeff Brown

    October 2, 2007 at 10:07 pm

    ….but honestly, my give-a-shitter done gave out.

    Sure to become one of the classics. 🙂

  10. Kris Berg

    October 3, 2007 at 8:39 am

    Wow! Glad my dues are going toward stopping this heinous crime wave. Left unchecked, you could have brought down an entire industry. Pretty soon, everyone would be casually tossing around the term REALTOR at the xerox machine or in their jacuzzi or while playing frisbee on their pogo-stick. It seems that NAR is just trying to put a band-aid on their little problem. Cry me a river and hand me a kleenex. I think I need an aspirin.

    If you want to take a stand, I will join you in chaining myself to your home page.

  11. john harper

    October 3, 2007 at 12:00 pm

    Ya gotta love those alligator lawyers

  12. Staten Island Realty

    October 3, 2007 at 2:22 pm

    It’s always a safe choice to go with a word “realty” in your domain instead of “realtor”. We own http://www.statenislandrealty.com and http://www.brooklynrealty.com and NAR can’t touch those…

  13. Passer By

    October 3, 2007 at 2:35 pm

    Screw them. You shouldn’t give in, ever. Represent yourself in court–if it comes to that–and blog about it each and every step along the way.

    The only way corporate bullies learn is by being exposed (and make no mistake about it, despite being a non-profit, NAR is a “Corporate” bully).

    Do not hire a lawyer, do not connect anything on your blog to your realty job (which you don’t do anyway), and do keep the name.

    Fight for what we all believe is right, and gain a ton of notoriety–and share lots of best practices with the rest of the Net in the process.

  14. Kevin

    October 4, 2007 at 5:43 am

    May I humbly suggest a different new name for your blog: realt0rgenius.com (with the number “0” no the letter “o”) I don’t think Realt0r is trademarked.

  15. benn

    October 4, 2007 at 1:35 pm

    Kevin, that reminds me of the movie transformers for some reason – realt0r!

  16. Chris Lengquist

    October 4, 2007 at 1:43 pm

    I’ll wait till I get the letter.

  17. benn

    October 4, 2007 at 1:58 pm

    Chris, you’ll always be minicoop to me!

  18. Phil Hoover

    October 4, 2007 at 5:57 pm

    Recommend hiring Denny Crane.
    Or, perhaps Joseph Ferrara 🙂
    The public already thinks every real estate agent is a Realtor.
    I suspect NAR would lose big time if they tried to defend their TM in court and it would be a VERY public loss at a time when NAR’s image is little more than a joke with their incessant cheerleading about “now is a great time to buy OR sell a house”.
    I suspect NAR is about to better understand the real estate blogging world.

  19. benn

    October 4, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    Man, Denny is my alter ego & Alan is litigating style when I argue before the mirror of my peers. I always win!

  20. John Howard

    January 28, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    I really don’t understand what most of you don’t seem to get about NAR trying to protect its trademark. Wouldn’t you do the same thing? The very purpose of a trademark is to prevent your brand from getting diluted. So, it’s a either shortsighted or clearly opportunistic to use a trademarked name as your domain name. I’m no lawyer, but in my humble opinion, it would be a bigger waste of time and money to try and fight NAR in court.

  21. Benn Rosales

    January 28, 2008 at 4:33 pm

    John, I tend to agree with you, and that is one of the reasons we did not persue legal actions to protect our right to use the brand- I am the brand, the site featured the brand, and the 1.4 million other brands that make up the brand around the country. In fact, at the time, we were in fact one of the only public voices that came down in favor of nar when those 1.4 million other brands were in an uproar over nar for various missteps.

    So, rather than bother, we made our point by smiling graciously, and saying thank you nar for noticing us.

  22. Sue

    June 3, 2008 at 10:17 pm

    Ha…just found this…I like the sounds of Agentgenius better anyway!

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