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Real Estate MLS Listings on the Web, June 26, 1995 – A tribute to Russ Bergeron

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 29 June 2022 06:27

On June 26, 1995, I received this letter from Russ Bergeron, who, at the time, was the General Manager of one of the largest MLSs in the United States, the Orange County MLS (OCMLS). RussBergeron2

Russ is truly the father of real estate listing web portals as we know them today. He championed and fought diligently with his board of directors to place broker real estate listings on what was then known as the World Wide Web. In 1995, Netscape Navigator was the leading “Browser” and Netscape’s IPO was in August of 1995.

Very few understood the magnitude of the internet, and very few understood how there could possibly be a “Member” benefit…. Russ Bergeron had the vision and most importantly trusted me to manage and protect his data.

And so, HomeSeekers.com was born 27 years ago ushering in a new era for Real Estate as the “Real Estate” book was transformed digitally and for the first time made public.

As I have often stated, “Being a pioneer, is not an easy job. Settlers have it much easier”.  This I learned from personal experience as I fought with Russ to bring what can only be described as a miracle, the Internet, to the world of buying and selling real estate. Brokers were not happy and believed that they were giving up their only real asset “The MLS Book” and giving “public access” to consumers. This was a frightening thought for most brokers and agents.

Of course, in time they learned that this new tool gave them more to offer their clients, not less, and over the next 10 years, they embraced the technology, and with the internet, they prospered.

Many portals have followed.  Russ Bergeron had the courage and vision when few were willing to step up and help move the residential real estate industry into the future. He pioneered what has become an absolute necessity for the successful practice of real estate sales for agents, brokers, and consumers. And in 1995, it was not easy to find someone who was willing to risk their occupation on a crazy new idea.

It has been an amazing journey, thank you, Russ.  

 

JGSig2

  John Giaimo

  CEO / Publisher Realty Times

  Former CEO HomeSeekers.com

OCMLS letter  

OCMLS June 26, 1995

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John Giaimo Realty Times Publisher

In the early 1990s, as founder and CEO of publicly traded HomeSeekers.com Inc., John was the first to place an entire multiple listing service home listing database on the web as he pioneered and implemented the infrastructure still used in today's online real estate marketplace. This included MLS, broker, and agent website development.

John pioneered the technology platform and interface to display listing walk-throughs of real property through the use of video. He produced the weekend cable and satellite TV shows The Real Estate Home Show, Search Homes on TV and Realty Times TV.

Drawing on his 30 years of real estate and technology expertise, John’s unique understanding of how technology can meet the needs of consumers continues to drive change in the Real Estate Market; he will continue to write the rules and set the pace for years to come.

www.RealtyTimes.com

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