Instagram Backpedals on New TOS

by Harry on December 18, 2012

InstagramInstagram has just published an article on their official blog to answer the concerns of users and press about their new TOS – and possibly to stop the movement of people that have been running away from their platform in the past 24 hours. Parts of the TOS will be reworded to be more clear and others will be removed entirely from the TOS. In particular,

The language we proposed also raised question about whether your photos can be part of an advertisement. We do not have plans for anything like this and because of that we’re going to remove the language that raised the question.

Something eerily similar (but possibly concerning an even more serious problem) has already happened around two years ago, as some of our readers might remember – make of this what you want. It is of vital importance that we, the users, keep an eye on these issues and understand that services like Instagram, or Google, or Facebook might seem free, but they never are. You are always trading something in exchange of the service: content, or information about yourself that is extremely valuable. And it is fundamental to understand that behind the cute and well designed facade, these companies are out there to be a business, and like all businesses they will turn into something else entirely as time passes, as bubbles explode, and as the need for profits changes.

I think there is no place for naïveté – read the Terms of Service, and decide if what you are asked to accept is worth the service offered. What we do and what we are is something so valuable, we cannot give it away without even blinking. Or reading a Terms of Service.


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