Anti-Instagram Lawsuit "Without Merit," Says FB

December 27, 2012
Word has recently spread that photo-sharing service #Instagram was going to ?monetize? under the control of Facebook. Many users were cautious about the news, predicting that their own photos may be sold by the company whether they like it or not. The adjustments in the terms of the website prompted Instagram users to file a lawsuit against the company in San Francisco. Lucy Funes, as well as other California customers, stated that Instagram committed breach of contract plus other violations. They could not wait for the new terms to take place in January 2013, as indicated by Kevin Systrom (@KevinSystrom), CEO of Instagram. The users of Instagram are outraged by the changed terms on the service, stating that even if they choose to close their accounts, the photos that they have already uploaded on the website will become the property of the service. Finkelstein & Krinsk is the Southern California law firm that filed the case, saying that the law supports rightful possession and Instagram clients have the right to file. Hundreds of other Instagram users are planning to immediately and permanently quit the app. Included is mega-celebrity Kim Kardashian (@KimKardashian) who shared that she used to love Instagram but found the new policy unfair. Kardashian currently has 5.7 million followers and stated her sentiments on Twitter. The new policy particularly said that the service was allowed to put ads relating to user content. Commercial communications, paid services and sponsored content may not always be identified as such. Instagram has issued an apology shortly after news on the revised terms broke out, saying that users had misunderstood the new terms of service. Systrom added that the company has no intention of selling user photos. He said that only the users own their photos and not Instagram. A #Facebook spokesperson also reportedly said that they are prepared to battle it out in court because they find the complaint to be lacking in merit. A Seattle lawyer who specializes in social media-related cases, Venkat Balasubramani (@VBalasubramani), called the case "borderline frivolous" and "flimsy" on the Technology and Marketing Law Blog. What about you? Where do you think this lawsuit will lead? Let us know in the comments!

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