Instagram’s new TOS out today. Did anyone notice?
So, Instagram brings in its new “old” terms of service today. How do we feel? Scrolling through my Instagram feed, there’s lots of snowy pics, the usual tube sleepers, some of my IGers friends having a pub meetup. No blank squares or messages of protest. And not a sausage on my Twitter iphoggy list. So, a pretty good result for Instagram. Phew! There are some reports of a dip in activity and other apps picking up a lot of new users. But otherwise, business as usual. Or is it?
Instagram is now a big corporation. Or it’s owned by one. I used to love the idea of Instagram being just four people in an untidy office, with a big server in the corner over-heating with the strain of activity, Kevin working late to post up a blog (they used tumblr just like you and me). And we know what big corporations are like. They usually take on a soul-less life of their own, powering forward with their engine-room stoked with bundles of investors’ cash. One of the things those bundles of cash pay for is huge teams of lawyers. I haven’t gone back and read the TOS, but I’ve probably read them in more detail than most people. Of course we don’t have the time or the inclination to read them. So they could be saying whatever they want and we would be none the wiser. But we know Instagram tried to pull fast one on us once and they’ll probably do it again.
But I think the deal now is basically that even with their old terms re-instated Instagram can make money out of your photos and not pay you. I’m not very social media savvy but I’m beginning to see how we will see our Instagram photos being used. Facebook shows a column called “Sponsored” with things like “Sebastian liked Electric Guest”. My friend Sebastian is a pretty cool dude and I may not know who Electric Guest are (probably a super cool band) but if Seb likes them maybe I should find out. You see? I’m waiting for one of my friends to tell me that one of my Instagram photos has been used like this. When that happens, I might have to leave Instagram.
Richard just posted a photo of a Mercedes. He probably thinks it’s a pretty cool car.