Listing Photo Licensing & Ownership Reminder

This is a periodic reminder to members that photo ownership and licensing are important considerations when listing a property in the MLS.

Too busy to read? We recommend that you watch this video from the National Association of REALTORS® covering “Copyright Best Practices for Listing Photos.”


Here’s a resolution that’s easy to keep: make sure that you own or properly license the photos used in your listings.

Copying photos from other listings, or taking them from the web, could lead to copyright claims and payment demands from the entities that own them. There were a few disputes last year, and while they were resolved amicably, you can avoid the hassle by taking extra care at the outset!

To ensure that you’re in the clear, you can hire a professional photographer. In fact, photographers that specialize in real estate will be more likely to understand your needs, as well as the practical and legal aspects of photo ownership, licensing, and use in the MLS and elsewhere. And if you engage a photographer that is new to the industry, NAR even provides sample agreements that you can use with them.

(Taking your own original photos, of course, is another way to ensure ownership and copyright is clear.)

It’s important to note that these issues extend beyond listing photos in the MLS. They apply to photos used on agent and broker websites, in promotional materials, and elsewhere. A simple rule of thumb? “If you don’t know where the photo came from, don’t use it.

Licensing and Copyright in the MLS Rules:

As subscribers to the MLS and users of the REsearch system, you are bound by the MLS Rules and Regulations. Article VII covers licensing and copyright, indemnifying HIS from claims of copyright infringement. This section also includes sample language that you can use when engaging a photographer to take listing photos.

Our rules document was last reviewed and updated by the HIS Board of Directors in October 2018, and is worth reviewing periodically:

http://hawaiiinformation.com/REsearch/IDX/mlshawaii/forms/MLSRules.pdf

Additional Reading:

We hope this periodic reminder helps you steer clear of the potential pitfalls of listing photo ownership and licensing. If you still have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Check Out the New Cloud CMA!

The best Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) tool in the industry is getting even better!

Cloud CMA is built into REsearch and is provided as a free member benefit! Hawaii Information Service members have created more than 40,000 Cloud CMA reports since it was introduced in 2011. Next month, Cloud CMA is rolling out a new design, and several new features!

New Look & More!

The new Cloud CMA has been re-designed to help you give even better listing presentations.

Every page has been re-designed, including a new modern theme set for a fresh new look. A new larger map makes it easier to review listings and exclude comps. You can easily add a listing (and even add off-market properties). And the library of available report sections include new and updated content!

As always, Cloud CMA works on any device, meaning you can start a report on your phone, fine tune it on your laptop, and present it on your tablet!

Switch to the New Cloud CMA Today!

The new Cloud CMA design will go live on January 1, 2019, but you can switch over now! Just click the “New Cloud CMA” link at the top of any Cloud CMA screen:

Want to take a closer look at the new Cloud CMA? Check out the blog post announcing the upgrade or check out the library of Cloud CMA how-to videos.

We also offer live training webinars every month, which includes classes on REsearch CMA and Cloud CMA!

ShowingTime is Now Available in REsearch!

Schedule-a-Showing-icon_xlShowingTime is now available in REsearch! You now have access to an industry leading scheduling solution that will save you time and effort in requesting, confirming, and managing property showings.

ShowingTime also provides a mobile app and can send text messages to make, review, and approve requests while on the go!

Everything You Need to Know in 30 Minutes!

ShowingTime hosted several Quick-Start Training webinars just for HIS members, and you can watch a recorded session here:

You should also check out the ShowingTime Overview in our Knowledge Base help site.

Schedule Showings Anytime, From Anywhere!

ShowingTime makes it easy for members to show and sell listings, reducing scheduling issues by simplifying the showing request and confirmation process, enabling members to work efficiently while on the go.

Benefits for Listing Agents and Offices:

  • Generate showing requests 24/7
  • Eliminate repetitive calls from agents checking availability
  • Automatically notify sellers about showings, feedback

Benefits for Showing Agents:

  • Point and click/tap to request showings 24/7
  • Control your showing schedule
  • Eliminate surprises by reviewing showing instructions
  • Communicate more efficiently with listing agents and offices

Use the ShowingTime App While On the Go!

showingtimeappIn addition to managing ShowingTime appointments on the web via REsearch and via text message, you can also use the free ShowingTime mobile app! The app allows you to:

  • Schedule or confirm showings
  • See upcoming showing appointments
  • View showing instructions
  • Respond to showing feedback requests
  • Get push notifications of showing requests and confirmations
  • Search listings in your MLS
  • Add activities (open houses, etc.) to listing reports

With your free ShowingTime for the MLS account, there is no username and password to use the app. You only need to connect your account to the app through a special email sent to your smartphone! Click here to learn how to activate the ShowingTime mobile app.


Download the ShowingTime Quick-Start Guide

ShowingTimeQuickStartGuide


If you are already a customer of ShowingTime and use other services like ShowingTime Appointment Center, please contact ShowingTime to learn how to connect all your services and get the most out of ShowingTime’s integrated agent solutions!

VIDEO: Copyright Program Follow-Up

Nearly all members have agreed to the updated copyright terms in REsearch. Thank you! With the agreement deadline of March 1 coming up, we’re back with a quick update, and also answer a follow up question: “When does HIS assert copyright over listing data?” We explain how the SLAA determines which listings are included in our quarterly copyright filings.

For the full details on the copyright update, please click here:

https://hawaiiinformation.wordpress.com/2018/01/17/copyright-click-through-required-in-research/

Latest REsearch Enhancements

We’re happy to deliver another set of improvements to REsearch, inspired by valuable feedback from members like you!

Printable Infographics

Infographic-Blue-Arrow-Border

We already provide monthly market statistics infographics for Kauai and Hawaii Island, which are designed to be easily shared online. We are now providing these same infographics in higher-resolution, printable PDF format as well! This pairs well with the more detailed PDF reports you can get from our new market stats presentation.

Easier Code Lookups for Sale Reporting

Report-a-Sale-Listings-Menu-Blue-Arrow-Border

When reporting a sale in which the buying agent is not a member of HIS, you are prompted to provide a non-member code instead of a Sold Agent ID in REsearch. To make it easier to find the correct non-member code, we’ve added a link to the Report Sale screen under the Listings Menu to the non-member code list in our Knowledge Base!

For reference, here are the codes you’ll find:

  • 1799 – Buyer Not Represented
  • 2311 – Non Participant: Real estate agent on Hawaii Island or Kauai who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9033 – Oahu Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on Oahu who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9035 – Maui Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on Maui who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9036 – Mainland Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on mainland who is not a member of HIS.
  • 1792 – For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
  • 2309 – Developer

Also: Updates for Co-Listors, Tax History, Email!

Here are a few other improvements we’ve made this month:

  • Co-Listors can now update listing photos, even when affiliated with a different brokerage.
  • Tax history data is more clear, with REsearch showing what we received from each county or N/A (instead of $0) if not available.
  • Friendlier prospect email headers for email systems that display them, removing “noreply” and personalizing for each agent.

These are only the first REsearch enhancements of 2018, and there are more improvements to come! If you have a suggestion to make REsearch work better for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! As we hope these updates demonstrate, we’re proud to be able to be responsive to your needs and deliver improvements to better support you!

Support for Larger Photos in REsearch

More Good News in 2017: Better Looking Pictures!

You can now upload larger photos for your listings! This upgrade supports four times the resolution (twice the width and height) of our previous system!

We’re thrilled to be releasing this REsearch enhancement, which will increase the quality of photos shown in the MLS, as well as photos that are distributed to real estate websites and apps.

Also good news: you do not have to do anything differently to take advantage of this upgrade. When you next upload listing photos to REsearch, the photo loader will automatically optimize your images for the higher maximum resolution.

If you engage a professional photographer to generate pictures specifically for the MLS, be sure to let them know they can now provide images sized up to 1200 by 800 pixels. You can specify these dimensions when using your own photo editing tools as well.

But if you do not upload larger photos, don’t worry… photos in REsearch at the previous default dimensions of 600 by 400 pixels will display as they always have!

For the most part, photos will continue to be displayed in REsearch at the same sizes as always, scaled down to fit different screens and formats. Even scaled to fit REsearch, however, higher-resolution images should result in better looking photos across the board!

How to see higher resolution images in REsearch:

If you want to view listing photos at full size, click the photo camera icon to view a grid of photo thumbnails, then double click on photos to expand them. This will show listing photos at their largest saved dimensions, both 600×400 and 1200×800.

Want to learn more? Check out this article on REsearch listing photo requirements on our Knowledge Base.

This is only the latest REsearch enhancement delivered this year that is inspired by your valuable feedback. (We introduced tax history last week!) And there are more improvements to come!

If you have comments on this addition, or have a suggestion to make REsearch work better for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! In the mean time, we will continue our work to ensure that REsearch is the best and most powerful real estate tool for Hawaii.

Hawaii Island Permits Update

We have added information on more than 21,000 Hawaii County building permits to REsearch! This update comes after our Honolulu County permit data update earlier this year, which added information on more than 78,000 Oahu permits.

For Hawaii Island, this update focused on updating our building permit information from September 2012 to today. As a result, REsearch now provides information on more than 347,000 Hawaii County building permits dating back to the 1960s!

BigIslandPermitUpdate

We gratefully acknowledge the support of Hawaii County offices in making this information available in REsearch. And we are still working on providing even more permit and other property information available for all islands!