Safe Syndication and RED LogosToday, October 4th, 2011 two vendors announce separate but complementary solutions leading up to the Council of MLS conference: CMLS. Both companies issued press releases of software that effectively works together to handle data syndication. Safe Syndication is a new product launch and reDataVault is a 2.0 release.

Both reDataVault and Safe syndication have similar goals in mind – they both seek to support MLSs in managing data outside the walls of the MLS. reDataVault actually distributes data, Safe Syndication does not..  reDataVault goes a bit further by automating the process of managing RETS/IDX/VOW/DataLicense agreements. Safe Syndication has a document repository, but is not a transaction management solution for applying for the agreement. Both systems have some billing integration.

Amy Geddes said that Safe Syndication is all focused on compliance. They will review vendor products for compliance. They will also evaluate portals and score them against the a measure like the Clareity Bill of Rights, or criteria established by the MLS. If you want to license the Safe Syndication solution for your compliance department, pricing starts at $12,000 for small MLS customers. If you want to save money on compliance, you may hire Clareity to do that for you. They will monitor your data on vendor systems for prices starting at $1500 to $2500 per month and will range up from there depending on the number of feeds, report frequency, and reporting depth. (In truth, I begged for pricing, all pricing is specific to your needs.)

“Ira Luntz of RED notes that reDataVault is and end-to-end content licensing management system, that saves any MLS time and money. While standardizing and streamlining the licensing work flow process,  reDataVault registers vendors (“Licensees”) and stores all license documents online- which are then easily referenced by product, vendor, license, or broker. The system notifies staff when data licenses are coming up for renewal automatically! It also does much more, including the automation of listing syndication, managing who has “opted-in” or “opted-out” of a syndication export, as well as physically delivering the listing data and images once a license has been approved and activated by the MLS or Broker. Upcoming free enhancements include integration with RED’s premier FormCentral product, RETS delivery services,  and  built-in listing syndication reporting, both at the MLS, listing, and Broker levels.  Moreover, it is very cost effective, with the base system starting at $500 a month.”

I put this post together in a hurry as I am heading out to catch a flight. But I did some “Victor Math” as my partners like to call it. $3k to $4k for professional data management and compliance is cheap. It is less than the cost of a staff member and performed by experts. Again, referencing Victor Math, if you are an MLS with 200 agents, that equates to about $20 per agent per month – which is absurdly expensive. So what does a small MLS do? Skip compliance? Probably. I think that there are somewhere around 150 to 200 MLSs with fewer than 200 members – I guess they will need to get along without compliance.