Instagram Rights TOS


There are a few areas of concern with the updated TOS from Instagram/Facebook that have got the web up in arms. I am no lawyer but tried to view this through an advertising/photographer lens ;-)


PARAGRAPH 1 – The first section draws concern by inserting words like “transferable” “licensable” “through any media channels”.

TAKEAWAY – Much of this paragraph allows Instagram to distribute your Content through Instagram API (think location/feed api) and translate your captions/comments.

HOWEVER, if you set your profile to private, Instagram CANNOT distribute outside Instagram and will continue to make Content only accessible to those ALREADY granted access.


PARAGRAPH 2 – The second section allows Facebook to charge money and allow advertisers access to your Content.

TAKEAWAY – In reality this allows advertisers to promote/sponsor your Content on Instagram ONLY. Much like what already exists on Facebook where advertisers can promote/sponsor stories, Instagram wants to “sponsor” photos and “promote” photos on Instagram. Likely will be used in your feed, on hashtag feeds, and venue/geotag feeds.


PARAGRAPH 3-7 – Limits liability of Instagram/Facebook.

TAKEAWAY – If you are photographer, it is up to the photographer to make sure Content has the rights to publish and Instagram can not be held liable. We are talking about model releases and underage models/talent. As for not having to identify paid services, sponsored content, or commercial communications as such limits liability and may be useful for implementing a paid suggested users list?

Public is public, private is private.

Tweet, Facebook, Instagram wisely…Instagram is not Flickr but instead an extension of Facebook, photographers tread carefully.