New feature in FlexMLS: Private photos
June 8, 2020 MLS Updates
Photo privacy has become a hot topic in the real estate industry, and we’ve made enhancements to tackle it head-on. There is a new option to mark photos, videos and virtual tours as private in Flexmls.
With the launch of this new feature, CCIMLS has changed their policy and will not allow photos to be deleted from the system after a sale as these photos are valuable for other agents and appraisers to get comparable sales.
What this means for agents:
You will no longer need to delete photos, videos and virtual tours to prevent them from being seen by the public. You’ll be able to mark photos as private to remove them from public view while retaining value for other members as they use listing photos to build CMAs or conduct appraisals.
Your homeowners will no longer have privacy concerns about photos of their home on the internet.
How it Works
Previously, listing photos, videos, and virtual tours are always visible to the public. They can be viewed anywhere the listing information is available, including consumer portals, on IDX websites, and any publisher you sent your listing to (i.e. Zillow, Realtor.com, etc.). The only way to prevent them from being seen on the internet is to remove them from a listing.
You can mark photos, videos, and virtual tours as private, which means that they’ll be viewable by MLS members only. They will not be available to the public via the consumer portal, subscription emails, or shared links.
Marking a Photo, Video, or Virtual Tour as Private
All photos, videos, and virtual tours will be public by default. However, any member with permission to edit a listing can change the privacy setting for any media on that listing.
In addition, FlexMLS is making it easier to keep media privacy in sync with a listing’s status. Starting on June 18, they are adding a new privacy setting of “Private While Off-Market.” With this setting, the privacy of photos, videos, and virtual tours will change automatically when the status of the listing changes.
This update will be available on June 18, 2020.
With this enhancement, a new Mark Private While Off-Market button will be available when editing photos and other listing media. When this new setting is used, the privacy level is set automatically according to the status of the listing. If the listing is in an on-market status, photos and other media are available to the public. If the listing is sold or otherwise goes off-market, photos and other visual media are made private and removed from public view. Off-market statuses are determined by your MLS.
Photos that have been marked private while off-market will appear on the edit photos page with a dark red outline and the label Private While Off-Market. To make a photo private regardless of listing status, select the photo and click Mark Private. To make a photo public regardless of listing status, select the photo and click Mark Public.
A similar Private While Off-Market button will be available on the Videos page and Virtual Tours page for a listing.
The Private While Off-Market setting is visible only to members with edit access to the listing. When the associated listing is on the market, listing media are displayed just like other public media. When the associated listing is off the market, listing media are displayed with a red Private tag in search results, just like other private media. In addition, private photos are displayed only on the private version of listing reports, and are not available via the customer portal.
Important note: You cannot mark a primary photo as private. You must also still abide by CCIMLS's photo policy.