Some of the Nation’s leading MLS (Multiple Listing Services) have banded together to apply for a top level domain name. They are proposing to purchase .mls as an alternative to .com, .net, or .org for organized real estate. The .MLS offering will present opportunities for MLSs, Associations, Brokers and Agents to differentiate themselves from the abundance of third party websites on the internet today. The company is a non-profit association founded by Arizona Regional MLS (ARMLS), Austin Board of REALTORS (ACTRIS), Carolina Multiple Listing Services (CMLS), First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS), Metropolitan Regional Information Systems (MRIS), Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED), Multi Regional MLS (MRMLS), Multiple Listing Service, My Florida Regional MLS (MFRMLS), Realtor Association of Greater Ft. Lauderdale, Regional MLS (RMLS), Southern California MLS (SoCAL), TREND, and Triangle Multiple Listing Service.
The new Company is seeking additional participation from All MLSs and Associations in the United States and could possibly extend their coverage internationally. If you are interested in participating, please email Info@MLSDomains.org. Press release enclosed offers more detailed information.
LEADING MLSS FORM ASSOCIATION TO SEEK ‘.MLS TOP-LEVEL DOMAIN
Minneapolis, March 29, 2010 Fifteen leading multiple listing services (MLSs) in the U.S. have formed
the MLS Domains Association, a non-profit national association created to obtain, manage and promote
the orderly use of the ‘.MLS top-level domain (TLD) on the Internet. The Association will apply late in
2010 to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) under ICANNs new gTLD
process. If successful, MLSs will be able to obtain domains such as MAINE.MLS, CHICAGO.MLS, etc.
“For years, MLSs and REALTOR® Associations have objected to businesses referring to
themselves as ‘MLSs in their marketing, when in fact they are not MLSs,” said Bob Bemis, interim
President of the Association and CEO of the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service. Under United
States trademark law, the term “multiple listing service” is generic; MLSs cannot claim exclusive use of
it. “Our goal is to create a place, the .MLS top-level domain, where the web sites actually belong to
MLSs, not to other types of business,” he said.
The Associations leaders plan for the .MLS TLD to deliver the following benefits:
Unique location of MLS data on the Internet. Use and effective marketing of the .MLS TLD only by
MLSs will make sites at the .MLS TLD definitive sources of listings.
Key geographical second-level domains (SLDs) will be available to MLSs. MLSs can obtain common
second-level domains (SLDs) on .MLS that have long since been sold on the .COM, .NET, and .ORG
TLDs. Domains like MAINE.COM, TEXAS.ORG, CHICAGO.NET, etc., were long ago registered by non-MLS
entities. TEXAS.MLS, CHICAGO.MLS, and all other location and plain English-word domain names will
be available to MLSs as SLDs under .MLS.
Better search engine ranking for MLS public web sites. According to some search engine optimization
experts, sites at .MLS domains may receive higher rankings if consumers search for “MLS” on search
engines. For example, a search for “new jersey mls” on Google would likely rank a site at
“NEWJERSEY.MLS” high in the results. Consumers might be more prone to select search results that
have .MLS TLDs because consumers may believe they will provide more reliable information.
“The Association looks forward to inviting all MLSs to join,” said Brian Larson, President of
Larson/Sobotka Business Advisors, a consulting firm engaged by the founding MLSs to create the
business plan for the Association and to guide it through its early operations. “For the next few weeks,”
he said, “the current leaders will be working on policies relating to membership, domain registration,
and dispute resolution that the Association needs to sort out before opening the doors wide.”
Membership in the association will be limited to real estate multiple listing services, including brokerowned
services not affiliated with the National Association of REALTORS®, and will be generally available
later in April 2010.
MLSs that wish to be put on a mailing list to receive news and notifications about the
Associations activities should send an email requesting information to Info@MLSDomains.org.