…And what it means to you.
There’s a fair bit of scaremongering going around the internet that Instagram are changing their policy, so that they can sell your images, I would just like to point out that, despite some of those reports are coming from highly reputable websites, they’re, shall we say, not right.
Shall we break it down and see just what Instagram is really going to with your photos?
That is telling you that they do not own ANY of the images that you upload to the service. You give them permission to display it on the internet or via their mobile app, but they are claiming no ownership of ANYTHING you upload. OK? Next and most important point…
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.
Remember when Facebook changed their policy in which you allowed them to access your photo albums in order for the images to be used in sponsored adverts? Well, that is what Instagram want to do as from January 16th, 2013. The only difference with Instagram is that there appears to be no way of opting out unless you take the drastic action of deleting your account.
One of the issues I think will certainly have to be addressed is even children under the age of 18 aren’t exempt from the new advertising policy and they naturally assume that parents have given permission for their child’s images to be used. From what Instagram are saying is that they have no control over which advertiser uses what images, so you never know (or will they disclose) where or what your precious little 13 year old daughter will be featured in.
They’re not SELLING anything except ad space to whoever wants to pay, the difference is, your pictures can and will be used in the promotions, but you won’t be paid anything for their use. Is that clear enough? People rushed in with ‘OMG THEY’RE SELLING OUR PICS TO ADVERTISERS’, it’s an initial knee-jerk reaction prompted from someone spreading false information around social networks and websites. Are they really selling your information or just the rights to use it and is that the same thing?
The option of whether you delete your Instagram account is entirely up to you and nobody will blame you for doing so, it’s clear that this policy update has upset the balance of the universe, but unless they provide an opt out option, the number of users is going to drop very drastically.