Instagram Changes: Stay or Run?

Instagram Changes Stirring Up Users. Photo Courtesy of Billy Alexander. Above Promotions Company Tampa, FL 2012
Instagram Changes Stirring Up Users. Photo Courtesy of Billy Alexander. Above Promotions Company Tampa, FL 2012
Instagram Changes Stirring Up Users. Should you remain a user or run? Photo Courtesy of Billy Alexander. Above Promotions Company Tampa, FL 2012


Wow! The internet is seriously buzzing over the upcoming Terms of Use Policy for Instagram becoming effective on January 16, 2013.

Many of you don’t like or fear legal terms so here is the main thing to know about the changes. Of course you should read the entire policy for yourself to ensure you are in agreement with or remain within their policy:

Proprietary Rights in Content on Instagram

  1. Instagram does NOT claim ANY ownership rights in the text, files, images, photos, video, sounds, musical works, works of authorship, applications, or any other materials (collectively, “Content”) that you post on or through the Instagram Services. 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.
  2. Some of the Instagram Services are supported by advertising revenue and may display advertisements and promotions, and you hereby agree that Instagram may place such advertising and promotions on the Instagram Services or on, about, or in conjunction with your Content. The manner, mode and extent of such advertising and promotions are subject to change without specific notice to you.


What I haven’t seen as a definitive answer to the latter part of paragraph one above, is the “private” definition. Does this mean if you make your page private this will protect your content? It’s still a little unclear, but now is the time to figure out what are you ok with sharing if it does not protect your uploaded images.

Now I can go on and on about how many of you already violate their terms with the types of images being posted, shared from their site, etc, but I’m going to keep today’s post short.

There are two things I want to remind every one of when using the internet. Three simple rules. Once you read them, you can then decide on how you want to use any content on the internet and then I’d love to hear your answer on today’s question.

1. Do not put anything on the internet that you do not want shared with the world. And to break down the world, let’s list your parents, employers, neighbors, people in a rural area of a country you will probably never visit.

2. Anything you put on the internet is subjected to being used for another’s persons’ or organizations’ commercial gain. Let’s not forget how the media and even your closest friends share your information outside of what you are sharing to the public for your business or personal use. So have you really lost ownership since you already chance it now?

3. Even if you delete a post or attempt to make it private, servers still maintain the data and other humans have access to do what they wish to it. I’ve seen it time after time with friends that are journalists and people who think their “friends” would never share their personal moments with others. Really think on this for a minute.


If you keep these three things in mind, you’ll probably remain calm while using any form of the internet, let alone social media networks – at least for legitimate business purposes. It is important to note and like many corporate lawyers would say, just because the terms are there, does not mean the business will operate in such a manner. It just means in case they do, you were forewarned.

With that said, what has you more mad? Your feeling of not having or maintaining privacy on the world-wide web or not being able to receive any income for someone else using your content for their revenue?

Which makes you more upset? Are you even upset? Would love to hear from Instagram or any social media user. Will you stay or run from Instagram? Your comments may be used for future articles.


Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit today.


Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the recent author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation.” To find out more information on the book, please visit or purchase online at Amazon, Booktango and other online bookstores.



5 thoughts on “Instagram Changes: Stay or Run?

  1. Well I know 2 cents doesn’t buy much anymore but I’m adding my 2 cents anyway 🙂 I don’t post stuff I don’t want in the public, those that do are not being responsible. Things go viral & people never know why nor can they predict what will & what won’t. I’m cloudy on how they are in one portion saying they aren’t claiming ownership & pretty much in the same breath saying, that because you displayed it on their site they can add, modify, delete, advertise, etc. Sounds like ownership to me but I’m still waiting for my 15 minutes of fame so advertise away on something I post, I’m ok with that but if I were a photographer using this to get my name out, I’d find another avenue. Maybe that was 5 cents worth lol

  2. Good point about being a photographer. This almost reminds me of the Pinterest discussion before. Many photographers are not a fan of either social media site. If protecting an image is of the utmost concern, at minimal a watermark should be used.

    Thanks for reading and sharing you 10 cents.

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