We know that some of you have questions regarding the pending acquisition of ShowingTime by Zillow Group specifically as it relates to your personal and private business data kept within ShowingTime. TMLS has had a long-standing great relationship and solid contract with ShowingTime wherein, like most technology product contracts we have, there are very specific language sections regarding data privacy and outside access by third parties to TMLS customer data. Let’s address some of these data questions here in five main points.
1. ShowingTime is not permitted to share or sell any of the personal information or content found within its app, regardless of the type. Put simply, your buyer and seller data entered into ShowingTime is yours and only yours and may not be misappropriated for any other use. In fact, there are very costly consequences in them doing that.
2. To go further, the showing history on your properties will not be provided to anyone other than you and, if you request, your client.
3. You will still be able to access your historical and future data. ShowingTime has, and will continue to, anonymize general data and trends for things like trends reports and research. There is no unique client or company data that is sold.
4. Zillow and ShowingTime have confirmed that they will be implementing a digital firewall between the two companies to assure no transfer of sensitive brokerage, agent, contact, client, customer, or personal data can move legally between the two companies.
a. Zillow Inc. (their Brokerage) will only be able to get info every other broker would get, and
b. Zillow Group (their portal and marketing company), will only be able to get the anonymized data that all other third parties can and already do get legally.
5. You will not have to be a Zillow Premier Agent to use ShowingTime going forward. ShowingTime will continue to operate as an open platform for its existing and new partners, and Zillow will continue to honor all existing MLS agreements that ShowingTime has in place.
The TMLS staff and leadership remain confident, and have been reassured, that we have all the reason to believe that everyone will operate in accordance with our existing agreements.
With all of this being said, rest assured that we will not be just sitting on our hands. We are constantly exploring all options and alternatives with all of our vendor relationships, as every responsible company does. TMLS annually takes a look at all the products that it provides for Subscribers. We have already been engaged with reviewing ShowingTime before this news came out. We will continue to explore all the products out in the market to find what best serves the functionality and needs of our Subscribers and is the best financial option for us moving forward.
Our number one priority is that our TMLS Participants and Subscribers will always have the best tools possible to cooperate and transact business within our market. Please feel free to forward this to your agents and share it at your office meetings.
You can find both Zillow’s and ShowingTime’s FAQ pages here:
TMLS Staff and Leadership