Instagram, the online photo-sharing site’s new user agreement is scheduled to go into effect on January 16, 2013. When Instagram announced in mid-December that it is changing provisions of its user agreement beginning on January 16, 2013, it was a subject of much online debate. Facebook purchased the popular photo-sharing service in September 2012 for $740 million.
Photographers keep “ownership” of photos however, Instagram has the right to use shared photos in its advertisements anyway they like. This has been the policy for some time. What changes is that the new service agreement language says that: “You agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos… in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you.” The current terms say the service can place ads “on, about or in conjunction with your Content.”
Users revolt because their photos can be used to market products to their friends. Celebrities worry that they will be exploited by the new language changes. Critics say that Instagram is under pressure to show that it is worth the price Facebook paid for it. The impact of the new policy will be clear after the implementation.