Instagram Changes TOS to allow Advertisers to Access Personal Info

Source: NYTimes, Dec 2012

1. Instagram can share information about its users with Facebook, its parent company, as well as outside affiliates and advertisers. 
Instagram said that the changes to its privacy policy are a means to help Instagram “function more easily as part of Facebook by being able to share info between the two groups.” The potentially lucrative move will let advertisers in Facebook’s ad network use data and information that users have shared on Instagram, like details about favorite places, bands, restaurants or hobbies, to better target ads at those users.

2. You could star in an advertisement — without your knowledge.
A section of the new terms of service, titled “Rights,” notes that Instagram will also be able to use your photographs and identity in advertisements. “You agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you,” the new terms say. This means that photographs uploaded to Instagram could end up in an advertisement on the service or on Facebook. In addition, someone who doesn’t use Instagram could end up in an advertisement if they have their photograph snapped and shared on the service by a friend. Facebook already runs ads that make use of people’s activity on its site.

Related Cnet article

Instagram said today that it has the perpetual right to sell users’ photographs without payment or notification, a dramatic policy shift that quickly sparked a public outcry.

Under the new policy, Facebook claims the perpetual right to license all public Instagram photos to companies or any other organization, including for advertising purposes, which would effectively transform the Web site into the world’s largest stock photo agency. One irked Twitter user quipped that “Instagram is now the new iStockPhoto, except they won’t have to pay youanything to use your images.”

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