Instagram Wants to Sell Your Photos . . . Without Paying You . . . and Hold You Liable for Model Releases and Infringing Others’ Rights

Instagram just went off the deep end with its latest terms of service update, which allows the company to sell your images without paying your at all for their use.

The relevant provision regarding the sale of your images is found under Item 2 of “Rights” in the Terms of Service as follows:

To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored content or promotions, 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.

This provision on its own doesn’t bother me so much as a casual user. It grates me a bit, but I’m not really sweating Instagram’s use of my images reposted as advertisements or promoted content on the service. However, I recognize that a lot of photographers out there use Instagram as a more serious marketing endeavor or have licensing issues with their images that they can’t allow such use without otherwise jeopardizing their business.

The major hiccup for me comes under Item 4 of “Rights” as excerpted below: [Read more...]