In May, Phoenix-based home builder Del Webb Corp. filed suit in United States District Court of Arizona, alleging Teel infringed Del Webb’s copyright. Earlier this month, the court issued a temporary restraining order forcing Teel to stop using the “suncities.com” World Wide domain name; to stop using any variation of Sun City on “icons, page headings, trademark, service mark or trade name”; to stop registering the name with any Internet search engines; and to stop linking to Del Webb sites.
The certified property valuation company has extensive experience in real estate valuation services In late April before the lawsuit, a cease-and-desist letter from Del Webb attorneys was sent to Teel and the NSI, which registers domain names on the Internet. Teel then wrote NSI and received a response that he claims went along with his argument that he was entitled to keep the domain name.
Teel claims he tried to cooperate with Del Webb and he claims he didn’t interfere with the Del Webb mission of building Sun City communities. He alleges that Del Webb is “attempting to bury me financially in an avalanche of attorney’s fees.”
In the brief history of real estate on the World Wide Web, a certain amount of innovation and progress has been in check because of a waiting game to see where exactly the National Association of Realtors and its Realtor Information Network project would sit.
Now that it is becoming more clear that there will not be a natural king maker (see NAR directors have two choices for RIN: fund or tank) such as RIN driving real estate on the Web, it is worth looking to the future. How are the different players progressing? Which mergers and joint ventures might occur and what is on the horizon from new faces and new companies.
For starters, will there be a leadership void with NAR in a more crippled and humble posture?
“I think the ‘void’ consists of two components — first, giving all agents ready access to a easy-to-use, low-cost and high-quality way to take advantage of the largest possible audience of prospective home buyers who are already searching the Web, and second, giving both agents and home buyers the ability to easily search all potentially relevant listings,” said Geoff Barker, CEO of Home Scout, the home listing search engine based in Seattle.