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ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors!

Arizona MLS Takes Stand on “Scraping” and “Indexing”


For Immediate Release:


PHOENIX, AZ – JUNE 10, 2009 – The Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service  (ARMLS) is taking a stand on a recent National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) ruling on the technical interchangeability of “scraping” and “indexing” as it pertains to display of the IDX Database on the Internet. A recent controversial interpretation issued through the Center for Real Estate Technology (CRT), NAR’s technology arm, advised members that “scraping” and “indexing” are in effect the same practice and represent misappropriation of the IDX Database. ARMLS believes that this ruling places NAR members at a distinct and serious competitive disadvantage. ARMLS maintains that the CRT opinion does not factor in the end use of the “scraped” and “indexed” listing data. It fails to distinguish between benign and malicious “scraping” and “indexing.” These practices are termed benign if they provide intended benefits to the consumer and the buyers and sellers whom the REALTOR® serves, and are not in conflict with the ARMLS IDX Policy. They are deemed malicious if they utilize the listing data in a manner foreign to the original intent of the REALTOR® and the property owner, and are incompatible with the ARMLS IDX Policy. The practice of “scraping” or “indexing” by search engines for the purpose of displaying or indexing the data for consumer property search, and which ultimately directs the consumer back to its source, is benign, and is in sync with the REALTOR’S® intention when displaying listings on the Internet. When a third party, e.g. a search engine, through “scraping” or “indexing” misappropriates and uses the listing data for purposes not intended by the property owner or REALTOR® , these practices become malicious and should be prohibited. Any interpretation by NAR prohibiting REALTORS® from allowing search engines, such as Google, from benign “scraping” and “indexing” listing data puts the REALTOR® at a distinct competitive disadvantage. The ARMLS IDX Policy contains the statement that “IDX Brokers must protect the IDX Database from misappropriation by employing reasonable efforts to monitor and prevent “scraping” or other unauthorized accessing, reproduction or use of the IDX Database.” The interpretation of this policy was not intended to discourage dissemination of listing information through search engine indexing or to discourage brokers or their permitted licensees who offer listings from optimizing their listings to achieve higher search engine placement. ARMLS supports and encourages a change in NAR’s interpretation of “scraping” and “indexing” that factors in the results of such activities and removes any competitive disadvantage that NAR’s current opinion creates.

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Written By

Russell has been an Associate Broker with John Hall & Associates since 1978 and ranks in the top 1% of all agents in the U.S. Most recently The Wall Street Journal recognized the Top 200 Agents in America, awarding Russell # 25 for number of units sold. Russell has been featured in many books such as, "The Billion Dollar Agent" by Steve Kantor and "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent" by Gary Keller and has often been a featured speaker for national conventions and routinely speaks at various state and local association conventions. Visit him also at and



  1. Jason Sandquist

    June 11, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    Ya see MIBOR… it’s not that difficult to understand

  2. Missy Caulk

    June 11, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    (((clap, clap)))

  3. Bill Lublin

    June 11, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    Russell; Thanks for sharing this. Thats why the enforcement of these rules takes place at the local level.

  4. Real Estate Feeds

    June 12, 2009 at 1:32 am

    ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors!:

    For Immediate Release: Arizona MLS Takes Stand on “Scraping&#82..

  5. Jeff Israel

    June 12, 2009 at 1:40 am

    RT @agentgenius: NEW ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors! – Well done @bobbemis.

  6. Mark Eibner

    June 12, 2009 at 1:43 am

    we’re at it again ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors!: Arizona MLS Takes Stand on “Scraping” ..

  7. Wesner Michel

    June 12, 2009 at 6:54 am

    ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors! | Real Estate Blog Magazine …: Arizona MLS Takes Stand on “Scraping” and..

  8. Vicky Henry

    June 12, 2009 at 6:27 am

    Finally…someone that understands.

  9. Eluminare RealEstate

    June 12, 2009 at 8:56 am

    ARMLS Comes Out In Favor Of Realtors! | Real Estate Blog Magazine …: Agent Genius, the first multi-author real..

  10. Paula Henry

    June 12, 2009 at 7:56 am

    The interpretation has always been my question. ARMLS understands – MIBOR doesn’t – we are waiting until November 🙂

  11. Matt Thomson

    June 12, 2009 at 8:55 am

    I’m glad someone took the lead on this! Now as more and more of our MLS’ face this issue, hopefully we can point to the decision in AZ as one that makes sense for the agents.
    Thanks for posting.

  12. Danilo Bogdanovic

    June 12, 2009 at 9:55 am

    Glad at least one association understands the difference between helping and hurting their members and the consumer. Thanks for sharing this with everyone.

  13. Craig Frooninckx

    June 12, 2009 at 10:59 am

    Actually, I would argue that the title should be that ARMLS has come out in favor of the consumers, since they are really the ones that win here!

  14. Keith T. Garner

    June 12, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    For the record, CRT assisted in NAR’s examination process that ended in saying MIBORs interpretation was valid with the rules as written. CRT made no judgment on what Google does or does not do, nor the policy as written. Please see for more information.

  15. eCampaignPro

    June 12, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    Arizona MLS Takes Stand on “Scraping” and “Indexing” #realestate #realestate

  16. Cal Carter

    June 12, 2009 at 8:31 pm


  17. Bob Wilson

    June 15, 2009 at 10:43 am

    Keith, MIBOR’s interpretation was based on an opinion of what Google does. The entire issue is about what Google does or doesn’t do, followed by an “if this, then that” conclusion. If CRT tendered no opinion on that, then how exactly did you assist in anything?

  18. Brian Larson

    June 18, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    I think MIBOR may have some basis for its position – this is a bit more complicated that the folks who’ve criticized MIBOR have made it out. We’re reviewing and discussing this matter in some detail over on


  19. Paula Henry

    June 18, 2009 at 4:39 pm

    Brian – I agree it is complicated. Having had the pleasure of dealing directly with MIBOR, they have earned their reputation.

    I have subscribed by email to follow your posts and thoughts.

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