I happened across a link to an instagram image today and discovered the new layout and design for the web version.*

It’s pretty slick, but I noticed one thing that I found interesting… can you guess what it is?(c) 2015 Instagram

So just what is copyrighted there?

Their website, for sure; their layout, colors, font choices, logos, etc.

Perhaps the comments and likes.

But my user name? My user photo? My picture?

I know that by using their service, I “grant[ed] to Instagram a non-exclusive, fully paid and royalty-free, transferable, sub-licensable, worldwide license to use the Content that you post on or through the Service, subject to the Service’s Privacy Policy…” (here), but that in no way gives Instagram the right to claim copyright on my pictures.

Maybe it’s claiming copyright on the display of my picture… that’s possible, I guess.

I spent about an hour hunting around the internets, but didn’t find much beyond the whinging about that fairly thorough description of the rights you hand over to Instagram/Facebook when you post a picture.

I have some concerns about that, and so I rarely post to my Instagram, and when I do, it’s usually something silly and is never my best work.

But I still wonder what exactly Instagram is claiming copyright on here.

If anyone from the service can explain that, please to shoot me an email or leave a comment below.

Until I find some clarification, I’m even more hesitant to use the service.

Oh, and I hereby claim Fair Use on the screenshot of your service, as I’m using it in service of criticism and comment, and maybe scholarship, news reporting, and research too. You could even call it ‘teaching’ if someone learns something from this.

*Just how ‘new’ it is, I have no idea… The last time I was on the web version was back in 2012 or so.

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