Instagram users enraged by terms of use changes


Photo-sharing service Instagram has risked the wrath of users by unveiling a terms of service document that may allow the site to sell on their pictures without consent.

The firm, which was acquired by social networking giant Facebook several months ago for $1 billion, announced the changes in a blog post yesterday. They are set to come into effect on 16 January 2013.

I am not down with my Instagram images being used in ads.

The document states that, while Instagram will not claim any ownership rights over users' images they post on the site, its terms of use mean that third parties can pay the company to use their photos.

"You hereby grant Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, transferable, sub-licensable, worldwide license to use the content that you post on or through the service," it states.

"To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos and/or actions you take...without any compensation to you," it added.

The post has prompted outcry from users in the Instagram blog's comment section and on Twitter, where many users have posted screengrabs of them deleting their accounts.

"I am not down with my Instagram images [being] used in ads, unless they come up with [an] opt-out," wrote one user.

The company recently riled users by making it harder for them to post their pictures to Twitter, a move some have linked to a story broken by Reuters yesterday about the microblogging site's reported attempt to buy the site before Facebook stepped in.

One user added: "I don't actually care about my privacy that much, I just want to be able to see pictures on Twitter again."

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.