What do the Realtor® Code of Ethics and the Facebook Terms of Service have in common?
People agree to them both, but they very rarely read either one.
Let's face it, how many times have you signed up for something, especially here online, and quickly scrolled through the lengthy "Terms of Agreement," and simply checked the box at the end?
We are all guilty of this! We have better things to do, bigger fish to fry. We can't be bothered by such trivial matters!....
I wonder, do we view the Realtor® Code of Ethics in the same light?
When we first got licensed, did we simply check a box, stating that we agree to the Realtor® Code of Ethics, and promise to abide by it's aspirational ideals, and then move on to more important, pressing issues?
Though we are required to satisfy on-going Code of Ethics training requirements, do we view them as annoying, necessary evils to keep our license active?
How many licensed real estate professionals have ever taken the time to actually read through the Preamble and the entire Realtor® Code of Ethics?
I guess it's easier just to check the box....
We operate under the assumption that we know the Realtor® Code of Ethics, but we don't. We know of them, but we don't understand them, or how they apply in practical, everyday practice.
Is it any wonder why our industry has such a dismal reputation?
People think they understand the Facebook Terms of Service. But then, we see stuff like this:
"As of September 28th 11:30 am Eastern standard time, I do not give Facebook or any entities associated with Facebook permission to use my pictures, information, or posts, both past and future. By this statement, I give notice to Facebook it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, or take any other action against me based on this profile and/or its contents. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of privacy can be punished by law (UCC 1-308- 1 1 308-103 and the Rome Statute). NOTE: Facebook is now a public entity. All members must post a note like this. If you prefer, you can copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once it will be tactically allowing the use of your photos, as well as the information contained in the profile status updates. DO NOT SHARE. You MUST copy and paste."
I recently started a series of blog articles on the Realtor® Code of Ethics, hoping that it might help stimulate a renewed interest and commitment to their ideals. But maybe they're just not sexy enough?