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InstaGram: "All your base are belong to us"

     
7:02 am on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Instagram says it now has the right to sell your photos

"In its first big policy shift since Facebook bought the photo-sharing site, Instagram claims the right to sell users' photos without payment or notification. Oh, and there's no way to opt out."

[news.cnet.com...]

Here's the link to the InstaGram post about the changes: [blog.instagram.com...]

..and the pertinent block of text from the (updated) Instagram TOS:

"Instead, you hereby grant to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, transferable, sub-licensable, worldwide license to use the Content that you post on or through the Service, except that you can control who can view certain of your Content and activities on the Service as described in the Service's Privacy Policy, available here: instagram.com/legal/privacy."

[instagram.com...]

...maybe it's a translation problem between Facebook's corporate double-talk and plain-English?


"All your base are belong to us" is a bad translation in the 1989 Sega video game Zero Wing [en.wikipedia.org...]
7:34 am on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Was there an uber-clause in the original EULA (or whatever they call it) that said "By clicking this button you also agree to be bound by any and all changes we unilaterally choose to make at any future date"?

I really, really wish I could put <fe>markup</fe> around the preceding paragraph. But I can't.
9:00 am on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I've read a number of people threatening to close their Instagram accounts today over this.
10:03 am on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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It looks like a cut n' paste job from the FB TOS:

(red highlight is mine)

Sharing Your Content and Information

You own all of the content and information you post on Facebook, and you can control how it is shared through your privacy and application settings. In addition:

1. For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it.

[facebook.com...]
12:53 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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i don't know about instagram (like how it works)

but if someone uploads a photo of me - they surely can't sell it without my permission!
1:39 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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The boundaries of online IP keep getting pushed and pushed, I wonder where the limit is.
2:16 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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The boundaries of online IP keep getting pushed and pushed, I wonder where the limit is.

When they find a way to let you sign in blood on-line and then they will own your soul.
3:23 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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har har.

As much as this kind of news can be revelating to the more online savvy, I imagine the less savvy don't care enough to observe these changes or similar kinds of conditions.
3:59 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I've read of a number of people I know closing their Instagram accounts in response to this. This is great news for competing sites.
5:25 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I've read of a number of people I know closing their Instagram accounts in response to this.

I wonder how many of them will say, "I'll just post my photos on Facebook" -- not knowing they are now one and the same.
5:29 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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A number of services using Instagrams API to 'download all images' are being hammered by traffic.

Flickr's App was re-released just in time - their model is much better for photo enthusiasts, which is really what instagram is about - the social side is a result... Shame.

I've made my profile 'secret' and will monitor the TOS over the next few weeks before I decide whether or not to end my membership.
5:38 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Pity I never created an account, so now I can't protest by deleting/closing/whatever it's named.
5:49 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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.. although i must say - of course the savvy all here know.

you get nothing for nothing, and ultimately any free service will be out to get you one way or another ...
6:00 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I really don't agree, not because you can't expect something for nothing – I get that – but because there are a hundred less invasive and down right litigious ways they could have monetised the service without claiming complete IP ownership for every photo posted to their system.

A paid app without ads for example - I'd have gladly handed over £1.99 for that.
6:02 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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If you are dumb enough to put your life, photos and all, on a site that you do not own, then this is what you get.
7:23 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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A few photo sharing alternative:

www.flikr.com
www.tumblr.com
www.photobucket.com
www.snapfish.com
www.smugmug.com
www.lomography.com

...or use one a free blogging platforms (Blogger, WP hosted, etc), and upload and share your photos there --- and write your own TOS.
7:36 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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once again im glad I never joined that madness
7:42 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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To add to lexipixel's list:
picasaweb.google.com
7:48 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Closing my Instagram account? That's no fun. Better we remove all our good pictures, and upload the fuzzy and out of focus (or all black ones) we take by mistake.
8:49 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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So... User A doesn't really understand IP law, he is friends with user B and user B sends him a photo by email. User A uploads it to Instagram and company C buys the right to use it for a national advert. But user B is legaly the content creator.

I guess this will also be pushing the boundaries of "safe harbor"

Mack.
9:18 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Closing my Instagram account? That's no fun. Better we remove all our good pictures, and upload the fuzzy and out of focus (or all black ones) we take by mistake.


lol.
9:38 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Maybe someone can sue FB/IG for false advertising --

On the Instagram home page it says:

Oh yeah, did we mention it’s free?

[instagram.com...]

...since apparently the service is not "free", (users need to give something up to use it -- their IP rights). I think this is a clear cut case of false advertising.
11:42 pm on Dec 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Seems the CEO/co-founder Kevin Systrom is backpedalling it already.

[blog.instagram.com...]

Although I'm not convinced: if the intention to be "correct" was there, they'd never had tried it in the first place, and he'd have slapped the wrists of the legal dept. that proposed this long before making it policy.
5:08 am on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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It's like giving yourself coercive permission to steal. Give us your pics or get off the bus?!

Shame on you Facebook!
6:09 am on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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...claiming complete IP ownership for every photo posted to their system


Does ownership exclude them from safe harbor provisions and make them liable for DMCA claims? One of the ideas behind DMCA is that copyright claim liabiilty for the content belongs to the user, not the host. So if the host assumes ownership of the content for financial gain does that mean they also assume liability for copyright claims?

I have a feeling the lawyers thought of this hole in their legalese and there might be a provision that allows the company to own the cake and monetize it too. But I'd still like to hear what it is.
6:58 am on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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It's the typical slime-ball stuff Facebook has been doing for ages. The seem to push out things completely over the top and then retreat to something that would have been seen as egregious before but in the context of what they threw out it doesn't seem quite so bad.

Maybe someone can come up with an Instagram watermark app and a jpeg compression app. I upload TONS of photos to FB but everything potentially worth anything has a nice big watermark on it and tends to be compressed from up to 20 megs down to 150K at most. What gets uploaded might be good enough quality to use in a banner ad if they erase the watermark but not in any kind of print or high quality advertisement.
7:03 am on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Another strong candidate to take away InstaGram users: [Hipstamatic.com...]
8:38 am on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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The fun will hit the fan when someone uploads a copyrighted image and Instagram resells it.

That's when those statutory damages kick in and they get stung.

Not to mention using images of people without a model release or images of property without a release either.

They're going to get burned and burned hard if they do something stupid.
5:39 pm on Dec 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

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The seem to push out things completely over the top and then retreat to something that would have been seen as egregious before but in the context of what they threw out it doesn't seem quite so bad.


Good point. It does seem very much that way, resulting in an apparent appeasement.

Example: If you're a photographer and want to use the Instagram facility to promote your work, don't submit anything other than low-res, limited size, watermarked images. It seems straightforward to me.
5:51 am on Dec 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

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Instagram Does an About-Face (NYT)

The controversy has driven traffic and new users to several other photo-sharing applications.

Pheed, an Instagram-like app that gives users the option to monetize their own content by charging followers to see their posts, gained more users than any other app in the United States on Thursday. By Thursday morning, Pheed had jumped to the ninth most downloaded social-networking app in Apple’s iTunes store, just ahead of LinkedIn.

Another runaway success was Flickr, Yahoo’s photo-sharing service, which redesigned its app last week to make it easier to share photos on Twitter. In a stroke of good fortune, it released the app to positive reviews just as Instagram announced it would no longer sync with Twitter, a Facebook rival.

The day before Instagram announced changes to its terms of service, Flickr’s mobile app was ranked at around 175 in Apple’s overall iTunes app charts. Since that day, the application skyrocketed to the high 20s.

[bits.blogs.nytimes.com...]

FB dogma run over by karma?
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