A few weeks ago there was talk about Instagram possibly monetizing the way they do business. Most assumed they would go the way of Facebook, their new owners, and begin putting ads in users’ feeds. What would come, no one expected.
Yesterday it was announced that Instagram would introduce a new Terms of Service on January 16th that states, “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.” Basically, anything you post to Instagram allows them to use and share with advertisers in order to make Instagram money, without giving you a cent. That’s all your family photos and yes, your tasty lunch pics.
Not long after the news hit the interwebs then Twitter was abuzz with backlash. As if users didn’t already feel betrayed by the changes last week disabling Twitter from the service, now there is a talk of a boycott that even celebrities seem to be joining.
Today, Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom issued a statement in an attempt to put out the flames saying, “We do not have plans for anything like this and because of that we’re going to remove the language that raised the question.” Of course this doesn’t mean they won’t move forward with the changes, but will re-word them for now.
Some sources have pointed out that there is similar language in the Terms of Service for Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and that this isn’t anything out of the ordinary. Either way it looks like Zuckerberg will be looking for any way to make his millions back from the Instagram deal, though the question is, how many users will still be around when he’s done making his changes?