Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Welcome to Housing Analysis - Vancouver Condo Info Shuts Down

This post is the 400th post for this blog and I had hoped that I could post about something good but it appears that just as pope's blog - vancouver condo info - was really starting to hit it's stride, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver has 'expressed concerns' about some of the content. Consequently the blog has been shut down.

I am interested in what concerns the REBGV has precisely and if they try to pull a stunt like that with me, I will make it very hard on them. I will vigourously defend my freedom to speak the truth.

I have my hunches on what the REBGV was concerned about and I would note that the pope's 'wiki' was likely incredibly embarrassing to many people in the real estate community. Although the real estate board could likely never win a legal action, they can exert pressure to make it difficult for a blogger to express themselves.

As usual this blog will be data based and analysis driven. I take a great amount of pride in the work we do here. Me and my co-bloggers really enjoy doing the analysis.

Pope's wiki is still up: http://vancouvercondo.info/wiki/index.php?title=Main_Page


Van Housing Blogger said...

this is an outrage.

Check RET--I posted the email I sent to Derrick Penner, Thetyee, Kirk Williams, and Garth Turner. I just sent another to the American bubblesphere (Ben Jones, CR, etc.)

The REBGV shouldn't be able to get away with this.

mohican said...

no - it is an outrage.

Bullying is so 4th grade.

Tony Danza said...

Thanks Mohican, I appreciate all of the time and effort you put into this blog.

I find the allusions that the Pope makes to the REBGV having a hand in shutting down his blog to be unsettling. If you ever need any legal advice please contact me by email and I can set you up with someone (and probably pro bono publico to boot).

Anonymous said...

I thought you'd shut down too.
Nice work VHB, would the board really try something this outrageous?

(still trying to figure out a better nickname)

Jordan said...
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condohype said...

The Pope has posted details of his correspondence with the REBGV over on the condohype blog.

Jordan said...
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VanR said...
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Holgs said...

Alright, I'm here now too... The torch is passed!

I just wish the old posts & comments from VCI could be up for posterity...

Rob said...
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M- said...

I can understand full-well how The Pope feels-- in 2000, a website I was running with grey-area content was threatened with a lawsuit. I complied with the request and took down the offending content, so there were no repercussions. But the situation really put a damper on running the site. Since then I've only made minor updates. This year I let the domain name lapse. The content's still online (on a shared hosting account with another domain I run), but most of the links are probably dead.

Mohican: if you get any BS like what The Pope got, make sure to drop me a line. I'm not a lawyer, but I know the language and can help draft responses. Remember, no need to make a hasty move and shut things down right away-- they're not expecting an immediate response-- there's some salaried employee on the other end of the email trail, they work a full time job, and the blogs probably aren't that person's #1 concern.

Rob said...
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mk-kids said...

Thanks for being willing to fill the gap Mohican! Man if you and condohype were to leave us now... yikes!

It is yet another sad day for us old grouchy bears in Van RE Blogworld. A well-deserved standing O to you Pope on your way out! Screw you REBGV, you big bully!

Mark Fenger said...


"I just wish the old posts & comments from VCI could be up for posterity..."

So we could throw it in Dosh and Dave's faces when their predictions turn out to be completely wrong? As much as I enjoy a good "I told you so" as much as the next guy I'm happy just to be proven correct in the long run. All of Dosh's predictions had already failed and only one of Dave's has yet to fall anyhow.

The only real topic for discussion is how far thing will fall and when is a good time to go bargain hunting. My call for detached is when GVRD Benchmark slips below 400k. There should still be at least a month or two of downwards movement after that so it will be a great time to get your deal (if you wait to buy until prices are rising buyers won't be in such a hurry to close).

Skye said...

Times they are a-changin'.... going to miss VCI but this blog looks promising, so it's on my daily blog watch now! Thanks Mohican!!

Unknown said...

Hey Mohican, congratulations on the 400th post and thanks for the kind words! I'm glad to see you just moved the site, I was worried you had shut it down.

Thats ok for me to do, but not you :)

The note from the board was rude, but pretty mild as far as bullying goes. It was just the final straw, not a big deal.

Best of luck with the new site, I'll stop by when I can!

Ulsterman said...

As Vancouvercondo has said, the requests from REBGV were fairly tame and certainly not a cease and desist. He can publish all he wants that isn't libelous, maliciously defamatory or infringing anyone's copyright etc etc.

I respectfully disagree with the sudden shutdown approach now becoming trendy amongst popular bloggers.

A simple statement of boredom / lack of time / zeitgeist change etc and a one-day (or more) timeline would be respectful to the visitors and posters that helped to make the blog successful in the first place. It takes two to tango.

Please don't tell me to go start my own blog - that would be missing the point. That said, thank you Pope and VHB for your initiative an hard work.

Thank you Mohican for picking up the batton and running. Given the immense period of uncertainty facing the world, i think your blog will be well supported and valued by your visitors.

Unknown said...

This whole thing has been overblown and I know my action of shutting down the blog is mainly to blame. I think the boards action was clumsy, and think they should have come right out with their request in the first email, but I don't think they care about eliminating free speech. There's nothing in it for them.

It comes down to me losing interest in posting story after story of the declining real estate market and no longer being able to find the humor in the situation, which was my primary motivation for starting the site.

I think "It's different this time!" is a very funny statement. Once everyone notices the emperor is strolling down the road naked its just awkward, not funny anymore.

That said I know there is some useful information shared on vancouvercondo.info, and many people have expressed interest in helping to keep the site going. So I'm going to shift it over to a community run blog. If I notice something funny in the market maybe I'll try my hand at writing occasionally, but other than that I'm going to leave it up to the regulars. If you're interested in keep the site going you're going to have to contribute. You've just got to keep stories factual and respectful and be okay with readers ripping your submission apart, whether bearish or bullish. I've put a post up with more details on the site.

Thanks everyone!
[posted on multiple blogs because I'm tired of chasing all these threads]

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Huh I thought you'd shut down too. Great work in here.

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