UPDATED: Instagram later updates their Terms & Conditions Here.
Instagram has seen alot of changes over the past few months. Shortly after Instagram’s Viral December Photo Challenge was launched we saw Instagram nixing their relationship with Twitter. Following closely behind all of that we saw Instagram update their Terms of Service (TOS) with a brand new end user-agreement. Instagram, who was recently bought by Facebook, announced the monetizing / selling of your Instagram photos.One bold move to say the least that rocked the community of this Social Photo sharing site. What happen? Is Instacanvas not generating as much revenue as intended? Or is Mark Zuckerberg an Internet Tycoon, learning of new ways to monetize your data?
Well one thing is for sure. A shockwave of anger and disbelief were apparent among Instagram’s loyal community and were seen throughout the communities of Twitter and Google Plus.
Here is the offending passage read from Instagrams New TOS:
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.
What Instagram’s New TOS Could Mean To You
Your #instaphotos become an Instagram All-You-Can-Eat Ad Buffet. Potentially some sort of Instragram Currency :
Insta what? Instagram will be able to share your photo data with affiliates and advertisers. I wonder how their ad system will be set up. I can imagine your photo being batched and categorized for advertisers to pick and choose according to their campaign needs. I could also imagine highly “liked” and commented photos would be worth more as they hold more potential to catch a person’s eye. Lets not even get into the wholesaling of photos. Never say never.
Aspiring Photographers, Models and Narcassist prepare for your unpaid #Instamoment. No permissions neccessary:
There has to be some percentage of the population that would savor seeing their photo being used in an ad. Don’t wait for a phone call though. No permission is needed to use your photos for advertisements. Better think twice before posting something that could go synthetically viral. This is easy to say as some people have not grasped this concept of “Public Feeds”.
Minors Have Data Too:
Even if your age falls within Sanduskys preferred age group, your photos are still up for monetization.
Stealth Marketing Always Packs A Punch:
One section found in their update TOS mentions the fact that these advertisements may not be labeled. The company stated “You acknowledge that we may not always identify paid services, sponsored content, or commercial communications as such”. Interesting business model here folks.
How to Opt-Out of Instagrams Updated TOS
Don’t kill the messenger but just kill your account. Quite frankly there is nothing that you can do, other then deleting your account. Which brings up the question, “Will Private Feeds still be subject to being used as ads”? Before you deactivate your Instgram account, make sure you download your album.
How to Download Your Instagram Photos?
Use Instaport to download your entire Instagram photo library in a .zip file format. I gave it a try for curiosity sake. It just took a few minutes.I read in a Wired Article that direct export to Flickr and Facebook are in the works.
What Does The Author Think About All of This?
Well thank you, I thought that you would never ask. It does not suprise me. I have become a bit passive when it comes to website monetizing my data. The fact is, that there is nothing free in life. You get a free service from them and they get your data. I am one of those users that reads TOS in its entirety. Having worked in the industry of Internet Marketing and Social Media, I am very cognizant on posting responsibly and that your data is in reality their data too. Lets not forget that your data sits on many different servers around the world and they have to pay for that in some way. Saving any potential flaming I will add that this is a bold move on the company’s part. Its much different then Facebook’s current model of using your “Likes” as relevance for displayed ads.