Instagram Photo Sharers Jumping Ship after Policy Change

Instagram, the photo sharing network acquired by facebook is now generating a broad range of opinions, concerning millions of users due to a recent changes in its terms of service and privacy policy.

Starting January 16th, Instagram will then share users’ data with Facebook (currently Instagram’s parent company) and, most importantly, use them in advertisements without the true owner’s consent.


Some or all of the Service may be supported by advertising revenue. To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored content or promotions, you agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you. If you are under the age of eighteen (18), or under any other applicable age of majority, you represent that at least one of your parents or legal guardians has also agreed to this provision (and the use of your name, likeness, username, and/or photos (along with any associated metadata)) on your behalf.

In short, it states that Instagram is able to use all your information (username, photos, actions, etc…) on its behalf, for advertisement and other commercial purposes, without paying you and without letting you know about it.

The new terms are generating a lot of discontent among loyal users, as thousands already left the network today and permanently deleted their accounts.

Instagram also explains that the new terms would allow the App to “function more easily as part of Facebook,” and help fight spam and “detect system and reliability problems more quickly”.

Today, Kevin Systrom, a co-founder of Instagram, posted a further explanatory note on the new policies, while thanking the users for their feedback.

In the post, Kevin tries to clarify the legal documents, as users easily misinterpret them, explaining that they are paying attention to all user’s feedback and stories in the press, and that they will “modify specific parts of the terms to make it more clear what will happen with your photos”. Further ahead, Kevin states that “it is not our intention to sell your photos. We are working on updated language in the terms to make sure this is clear”, and that “Instagram users own their content and Instagram does not claim any ownership rights over your photos”.

It does appear that Instagram’s golden era might be put to an end with all this controversy and dissatisfaction. In fact, the new terms of service and privacy policy are a direct result of Facebook’s revised terms that removed user voting on site polices, which ironically was implemented to similar controversy that hit Facebook back in 2009.

For now, and while further developments on this issue are yet to be seen, current users who do not agree with the new terms can do nothing but abandon their much loved Instagram account.

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