Mobile Apps

Instagram Policy Changes Impact Privacy

Why This Instagram User Is Ditching App

Instagram may have been built as a technology company whose only goal was to sell their photo sharing services for as much money as possible, but that does not change the fact that the services they offered had real value to its users. Instagram quickly became viral among social networking junkies, photography enthusiasts, mobile app addicts or simply anyone who enjoyed capturing photos with their mobile communication devices because the free service allowed people to capture, edit and share digital photographs. These images could be splashed with funky editing filters that provided users with a way to make their unique photos look even more unique. However, many people felt the recent Facebook acquisition of Instagram would bring unflattering changes to the popular photo sharing company in terms of privacy policy and conditions of use/service. Well it only took a couple of months before the privacy invasion specialists at Facebook modified policy to abuse the intellectual property rights of its users, forcing this one time Instagram lover to cease using the photo sharing service.

Facebook places almost no value on the privacy of its users and that is why it came as little shock that once they acquired Instagram that policy changes would be fast coming. The most recent policy change that infuriated users basically stated that Instagram would be given the ability to take the images of its registered users and sell or use those photos without needing any form of consent. The idea that family photos, personal images or any digital photograph displaying artistic expression captured by users could be taken without permission by Instagram and used for profit or exploitation was simply ridiculous. The uproar among users was swift and it only took minutes before technology blogs were blowing up about the absurdity of the policy. And this is just one of the many changes to policy that Instagram pushed forward that reeked of legal BS. Policy changes that make it almost impossible for its users to keep photos private. Instagram was probably well aware of the controversy their privacy policy changes would cause and that is why it made a number of other controversial changes that would likely be overlooked. Changes to privacy settings and other settings. However, at the end of the day what Instagram wants is total access to  user data, GPS locational data and more. They have taken every measure to invade the private data of their users to push their marketing agenda, whether that be to sell directly to users or sell that personal data of users to third parties. Either way the end result is the theft of data and that is why this GPS auto tracking expert is disappointed. Disappointed that Instagram has eliminated the concrete, protective language from about protecting photographs designated as “private.” Changing those clearly-worded privacy protections opens the door for Instagram to change its privacy settings and reduce user control of content at anytime without ever making any modification to the privacy policy. Basically, if users want their family photos, artistic images or any other photographs captured then shared on Instagram to be private then the best thing to do is not share the digital content on Instagram to begin with. Policy changes will always be used to give a company the ultimate level of control over user driven content. That is why this Instagram user has chosen to delete his account and all data associated with that account. Would you be okay with Instagram having some form of shared copyright to your personal photographs captured using the their mobile app? Should users have the ability to make profiles and photos completely private? Are you concerned with the GPS tracking feature now used on Instagram that tracks where a person is at when they take a photograph?

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