Illinois REALTORS® attending the Professional Standards Workshop in Springfield Tuesday received explanations of changes to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, including the addition of specific language that addresses the use of misleading photos or other images in online content.

Bruce Aydt, a co-facilitator at the workshop, explained that the change is designed to answer questions about images that frequently are asked by members. In addition, numerous wording changes to the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual were outlined, a new Arbitration Settlement Agreement was adopted, learning objectives for the Code of Ethics Training were updated and the NAR approved funding for the Commitment to Excellence education platform and will start development this year.

“It’s all about the angle,” said co-facilitator Diane Disbrow, referring to sample photos of homes shown on projector screens at the front of the room. One image taken next to a swimming pool in a backyard made it appear to be an in-ground version, while a second image showed the pool was actually a smaller above-ground version.

Aydt and Disbrow also thanked all professional standards enforcement volunteers for their service to their communities, their profession and their clients.

Following their presentation, Aydt and Disbrow led the class of approximately 150 REALTORS through a review exercise of two case studies and then presented a session on Ethics and Arbitration Hearings.

Afternoon sessions were scheduled to include a mock arbitration hearing, information on the Ombudsman Program, the Ethics Citation Program and a question and answer period.

For more information, see the Professional Standards Toolkit and a web page about Copyright and images.