Has Instagram become Pornstagram?

 

There are few things I loathe more than a hypocritical network whose actions aren’t consistent with their guidelines… even if it’s the same platform I’ve promoted, defended, championed and became instafamous on during the last year. That’s right Pornstagram, errr I mean Instagram, I’m talking about you. Has Instagram become Pornstagram?

Has Instagram become Pornstagram

It probably doesn’t come as a surprise that instaporn runs rampant on the photo sharing network. Articles published last August from Huffington Post and Daily Mail, among others, have already exposed the sexier side of Instagram. I’m not here to discuss whether or not this is wrong.

Fact of the matter is we live in a sexually driven society and if a 14yr old boy wants to see some T&A, he’ll find it somewhere else, like tumblr, where x-rated material is commonplace and allowed, if it’s not available on Instagram.

 

Innocent Victim

So where’s the beef? My contention comes from the manner in which Instagram chooses to play their “terms and condition” card. You see, I have a friend who recognized an opportunity to help attractive girls get Instagram famous.

I’ll refer to him as Kevin because he wishes to remain anonymous for fear that IG will disable(delete) his personal account, too, if he speaks out. But I’m not scurred, I’m gonna stand up and fight for equal rights anytime.

Here’s the long and the short of Kevin’s operation. He would give shoutouts to girls wearing skimpy outfits such as bikinis and lingerie. A shoutout is when you mention/recommend to follow another Instagrammer. Here are a few examples of what was posted on Kevin’s page (faces blurred since posts are no longer on Instagram and not considered public anymore)

Instagram Provocative Photos

I don’t see any nudity here, or partial nudity, for that matter. Are these pictures provocative and/or maybe suggestive? Sure. Is it anything you couldn’t see in a Maxim Magazine or Victoria’s Secret catalog? No. But, the funny thing is, Kevin has had 2 instagram pages shutdown for violation of terms since Mid-March.

I know firsthand how much time and energy he put in while building each account to 19,000+ and 28,000+ followers, respectively. For instagram to disable these pages without any sort of explanation or response is preposterous, if not insulting. Though, not responding to concerned users seems to be the norm with Instagram… unless you’re a major website or magazine, of course.

 

Preferential Treatment

With me being that instafamous guy and all, I offered my assistance to see if I could garner a response from their support team. Over the last month, a combined 40+ emails went unresponded to. Now, after investing all this time and experiencing such frustration, it’s personal. Especially after seeing “about us” entries such as this

The Chive Gap

SO THEY REALLY DO RESPOND!?! It would be one thing if Instagram was REALLY putting forth an initiative to rid its network of mature content. However, it’s a completely different animal when a network is obviously choosing who gets immunity to post what they want and who goes to instajail.

This is all the proof needed to show that Instagram is giving the green light to post racy pictures. Before I go on with the additional evidence, allow me to say I love The Chive website. I also admire and appreciate the women who are in Suicide Girls or published in Playboy. I think they should be allowed to have Instagram Accounts, BUT ONLY IF PEOPLE LIKE KEVIN CAN DO THE SAME THING!

A network as large as Instagram should know better than to allow certain brands/publications to post content which is even more revealing than what they shut down other pages for. Call me crazy, but these pics look a lot more nude and suggestive than what Kevin was running!

Pornstagram Playboy

Granted the kibbles and bits aren’t showing, but they all have seem to be missing something… CLOTHES! So much for not allowing nudity, right?

Instagram does offer a feature to report/flag content that you find inappropriate. To further my point, I went ahead and flagged each of these posts on multiple occasions last week since they’re clearly in violation of IG’s mythical terms. Not surprisingly, all three of these accounts are still active and none of the posts were removed. If these three entities are allowed to post beautiful women, why can’t Kevin?

 

Stop the Charade

I’ll be the first to agree that there is no place for underage nudity or sexually explicit content, but I can still find both on Instagram. Worry about that getting rid of that stuff so I don’t have to see a dude’s junk when I’m searching tagged posts. Worry about the spam-bots and fake profiles that have overrun your network. Stop acting like a playground bully and let everyone play in your sandbox instead of kicking the small guys out.

Really, there are two choices for Instagram and their Big Brother, Facebook. Either manage/limit ONLY the smuttiest (underage/explicit) OR eliminate the showing of skin altogether FOR EVERYBODY… none of this half-assed “We restricted a few tags and are removing a few pages” strategy.

So the ball is in your court Instagram Team… what’s it gonna be? Either shutdown these popular pages which are in violation of your terms or reinstate my friend’s @fantassticgirls account since you knowingly allow these pages to post content more mature than what he was posting.

I want to hear from you…what do you all think about this? Am I overreacting or do you agree are clearly two sets of standards here? What other examples of preferential treatment on social networks have you seen?

 

If you enjoyed this article, check another piece from Tony on how to become instagram famous

Tony Bennett is a passionate photographer, future Senator, and Instagram Superhero with over 100K Followers.  Above all Tony is great guy and would be happy to answer all your Instagram questions below.

Why You Should Use Instagram for Your Business

 

Instagram is arguably one of the hottest social networks right now, and you should use Instagram for your business. What started out as a small, somewhat underground network has now blown up into a huge online presence with more than 100 million users. I think it’s safe to say that most people with accounts on other major social media networks like Facebook or Twitter are now participating in Instagram as well.

Instagram uses the #hashtag, similar to Twitter. Users can tag their photos, then people who view the photo can click on the hashtag to see other photos that are tagged the same way. While some people make up their own hashtags, there are some that are popular and have become kind of a staple on the network. Some examples of this would include #dogsofinstagram, #latergram (when you post a photo after it was taken) or #tbt (throw back Thursday, where users post photos from their past). Instagram has proven to encourage lots of interaction between users.

In April 2012, Facebook purchase Instagram for approximately $1 billion. The networks are now integrated, and the Instagram Why You Should Use Instagram for Your Businessinterface offers users the opportunity to share photos directly to Facebook, Twitter, and several other networks as well.

So with the popularity of Instagram on the rise, it only makes sense to figure out a way to make it work for your small business. With more than a hundred million active users, you are bound to reach your audience by using this network.

Here are some ways that you can use Instagram to become instafamous:

Feature your products or services – Instagram offers fun filters that you can use to change your photos. You can also edit them right in the app. Take fun, artistic photos of things that you offer as a business. It’s more visually interesting than just a straightforward photo listing of products. There are also other apps, such as PicStitch, that you can use to combine several photos into one.

Let your customers know that you have an account – the great thing about Facebook and Instagram being integrated is that you can share photos on both accounts. By taking the step of putting your Instagram photos on Facebook, your followers will see that you have an Instagram account and check it out.

Have a relevant but fun username – Instagram is a great place to get a little more creative and fun. While your user name should definitely relate to your business, I think it’s fine to have a little fun with your username.

Use hashtags – some Instagram users merely post photos, but don’t use hashtags for each one. If you use relevant hashtags for each post, more people will see the photos that you post. For instance, if you tag your photo #saleoftheday, anyone who clicks on that tag from any photo will be able to see your photo also.

Instagram can be a fun social network to use for personal photos, but it can also be another weapon in your business’ social media arsenal!

(Photo Source)
Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide.

Instagram: Time to Play the Instablame Game!

You probably think this post is going to bash the new Instagram terms of use that would have went into effect on January, 16th… But no, I’m going to be bashing you and everyone else that hopped on the Instarevolt bandwagon a couple weeks ago.  Seriously, how can people who didn’t even read the original terms they signed up for be complaining when they don’t really know what actually changed?

Instagram Changed Their Terms

Come on People!

 

After learning about the class action lawsuit filed against Instagram regarding the change, I nearly blew a gasket!  I know we’re a lawsuit happy society but come on, how do you file a case for something that hadn’t yet or may not even happen?  Damages? Really, what damages? Please.  I wonder if someone plans on taking legal action against the Mayans because the world didn’t end.  That’s about how absurd I think this is.

The Instagram backlash was unlike anything I’ve ever seen; especially considering the updated terms ACTUALLY LIMIT WHAT IG can do with your photos, as opposed to the existing terms.  Oh wait, you probably didn’t realize that because you were too busy piling on the bandwagon.  IG users seem to have kicked the picturehorse in the mouth when you get down to the nitty gritty.  I’ll do my best to break down the difference between the existing/revised terms verse the rejected new terms.  There’s plenty of Instablame to go around, IG included, but once you compare the terminology, you’ll see the Occupy Instagram movement wasn’t a victory at all.

 

Reality of Old vs Proposed

 

Granted I’m not an attorney, I only play one on this blog, but everyone who’d been using Instagram since 2010 has been subject to these terms as follows (from Docracy):

Instagram Terms

All we’ve done is extended IG’s authorization to use, modify, delete from, add to, publicly perform, publicly display, reproduce and translate our photos.

Call me crazy, but next time, you should READ THE TERMS OF USE BEFORE you sign up for a service so you:

A.) Understand your rights

B.) Aren’t one of the stupid or the blind who add fuel to a fire that shouldn’t have been burning as fiercely in the first place.

While the rejected new terms were poorly written and easily misinterpreted, they CLEARLY limited what could be done with your content.

 

Don’t Worry, your Instagrams won’t be on a billboard

 

I can appreciate the stance of people who deleted their accounts out of principle.  Some people simply don’t want to risk their family photos or selfies being associated with advertisements.  Others are simply flattering themselves when they drop out because their stuff is so good advertisers will be lining up to steal their photos.  Though the question still begs, what were you doing on IG in the first place??? The risk has ALWAYS been there! Look, I have over 85,000 followers and hundreds of people tell me every day “how great” my photos are.  You don’t see me jumping ship.

The real reason you don’t need to worry comes down to one main factor – the picture quality.  I mean, have you ever seen an IG picture on a big monitor?  Only the best look palatable and the average looks downright dreadful.  That’s no offense to you; mine suck, as well, comparatively speaking.  DISCLAIMER: If they start uploading a full-resolution copy, I may make like Systrom and quickly backtrack J

And really, so what if an advertiser pays to have your post promoted (ie FB facebook sponsored post but on IG popular page); isn’t that a compliment?  I love it when Pure Michigan shares my content on their various social media channels.  Although, a key difference is they ask me prior to doing it.  It’s understandable why some people simply don’t want to risk having their photo used behind their back.  They shouldn’t have been on Instagram in the first place if it bothered them that much because it happens to ALL photographers on ALL platforms.

 

Facestagram needs to get a clue

 

Don’t worry, I’m going after everyone.  Instagram isn’t without blame and neither is Big Brotherbook. The manner in which they introduced their new terms was shady and the verbiage was easily interpreted as “we’re going to sell your photos to advertisers and there’s nothing you can do about it.”  From a PR standpoint, it was either idiotic or it was some ill-planned covert tactic to test us.  How did they not know there would be a reaction like this?  Does Facestagram even know its users?  When you get down to it, and the main reason I’m sticking around, is there’s no audience quite like the one you’ll find on Instagram.  We don’t want to be sold, but we will be supportive.  It’s an interesting dichotomy, to say the least.

Let’s remember, though, Instagram is now FB’s puppet for better or worse.  Facebook has a similar set of terms that everyone manages to deal with, though, so I’m not entirely sure why this was so blown out of proportion.  Aside from content privacy bit, the biggest laugher was regarding the age of its users.  “Sure, I (a 15 year old girl) have my parents agreement to your provision” said no one, ever.   They really do need to get a clue so a disruption like this will never have to be endured again.

 

You’ll also love >>> Instagram: How to Become Instafamous

I hope you enjoyed the piece.  Comments are welcomed and shares are appreciated. 

Tony Bennett is a passionate photographer, future Senator, and Instafamous Instagram Superhero.  Above all Tony is great guy and would be happy to answer all your Instagram questions below.