If you are on Twitter and, popular photography app, Instagram, you are likely to be aware of Instagram’s latest faux pas. Essentially what they did was make a change to their terms and conditions which suggested that they could sell users’ photographs. Following a good deal of Twitter rage, Instagram have back-tracked, said it was a misunderstanding, and made changes accordingly. I suspect they have lost a lot of users in the process. The power of Twitter…
I have left Instagram and it was prompted by their error. Instagram is owned by Facebook; Facebook seems to have a habit of back-tracking on things and they did on this occasion. I waited to see what action Instagram took, but I still left. I left because it made me very aware of the fact that if I spread my content (on this occasion photographs) too thinly online, I lose all control. Don’t get me wrong, I am not naive enough to think I have ‘much’ control; when you put yourself online you should do so from an informed perspective. However, I put a lot of time and effort into the content I produce (writing and photography) and whilst I do make a small amount of money as a result, it’s not much. So the idea of someone else profiting from my work does not sit well with me.
Another reason for leaving Instagram was my distrust of Facebook. Whilst I think Facebook is fantastic for fan pages (my iMake page has almost 500 followers – whoop!) I use it minimally for personal matters. Someone else benefitting from my work is personal!
All iMake produced content is Creative Commons licensed, so I am keen for people to share my work but credit must be given. If you produce, or indeed consume, online content, you should be aware of Creative Commons licensing (see this video on Creative Commons).
Popular photo sharing website, Flickr, has just recently brought out an iPhone app. This is what I will be using in place of Instagram. Flickr gives you complete control over how you licence your photographs; they always have done. I need to have a major clear-out of my Flickr account because (a long time ago) I made the mistake of hosting all of my website images on Flickr. Most of these are now hosted with my website, but a few aren’t. This will be a new year project. However, once that’s done, my Flickr account will be more active. You can find me here: iMake on Flickr.
It’s occurred to me that a common theme in many of my social networking blog posts is control.
I don’t want this to come across as a rant in any way as that’s not my style! Quite a few iMake followers have reacted to the Instagram issue though, so I wanted to share my views and perhaps generate some conversation… Thoughts?