LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The reports in the media aren't lies or assumptions, but they're certainly stirring up quite a bit of chaos between Instagrammers.
On Monday, Instagram, a completely free organization bringing in virtually no money, announced an update to their current Terms of Service that would bring in some dollars to itself, as well as Facebook, which purchased the photo sharing app months ago.
While the Facebook/Instagram acquisition was being decided upon, Business Insider reported when they asked co-founder Kevin Systrom how Instagram made money. He answered, "That's a great question. We do not."
One article being tossed around Twitter is from CNet.com with the headline, "Instagram says it now has the right to sell your photos." It seems that many articles with headlines such as this threw Tweeps into a whirlwind, placing Instagram in the top 10 Twitter trends for the day. After examining the current policy, the changes are rather minimum.
Social Media Today broke Instagram's policy changes down into these two sentences:
1. They can sell your photos to create ads.
2. They can use your photos in the Instagram feed to create stories.
The current Instagram Terms of Service reads, "By displaying or publishing ("posting") any Content on or through the Instagram Services, you hereby grant to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, worldwide, limited license to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce and translate such Content, including without limitation distributing part or all of the Site in any media formats through any media channels, except Content not shared publicly ("private") will not be distributed outside the Instagram Services."
A writer for Social Media Today wrote that the real addition is the possibility for Instagram to use user content to create ads, much like Facebook's Sponsored Stories.
While these changes take away from the simplicity of Instagram, it may necessary for the company to continue providing their service to users.
Two hours later, Systrom published a blog post titled "Thank you and we're listening," to say that as they review their user feedback and stories in the press, they're going to modify specific parts of the Terms of Service to make it more clear what will happen with user photos.
Touching on one of the most talked about facets of the changes, Systrom wrote, "I always want you to feel comfortable sharing your photos on Instagram and we will always work hard to foster and respect our community and go out of our way to support its rights."
Additionally, Systrom wrote that legal documents are easy to misinterpret. In the post, he describes the modifications into layman's terms. Read the post here: http://on.kthv.com/V5yPBX
-Written by Jessica Johnson, THV 11 Social Media Coordinator