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Conflicts Between RPR’s Public Statements and Proposed License

Feb 19, 2010 Michael Wurzer

Brian Larson does an excellent service to the MLS industry presenting on his blog his analysis of the RPR license agreement, which he concludes:

RPR has been making promises about how data will be used (on its blog, in presentations, etc.) without incorporating those promises into the license agreement. MLSs that want to be sure that their data is used as RPR has promised will want to incorporate those promises into the license agreement before signing.

I’ve spoken with Marty Frame and and even moderated a panel at Inman with him (and Brian Larson and Jim Duncan) and he’s always been clear about the intent of RPR not to re-license to third parties listing level data (only aggregate data) obtained from MLSs.  Given this, why is it that the RPR license agreement doesn’t reflect this stated intent and, as Brian notes, even conflicts with it?

Matt Cohen expresses similar concerns in a recent blog post and also has published results from a recent survey of MLSs Clareity did regarding RPR.  Personally, I just find it weird that the license agreement isn’t more clear on points about which Marty Frame and Dale Ross have been clear in public.  As Brian Boero recently noted on Twitter: “The communications effort around #RPR is at once excellent and catastrophic. A great case study.”  Clearing up issues like this seems to be critical to an effective communications effort.