Unless you’ve been hiding in a cupboard you would have noticed the enormous backlash to Instagram’s new terms of use, specifically:

“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.”

When Instagram was purchased by Facebook earlier this year for a reported $750m – $1 billion….you just knew something was going to change.

I see 3 major issues that brands and organisations have to consider:

Issue 1.

Have no doubt, if you don’t manage your Facebook page effectively you will be held responsible.

“Brands will still be held responsible for comments by the public on their Facebook pages after the Australian Association of National Advertisers resisted pressure to change its definition of advertising.” AANA

More info here.

Issue 2.

You don’t have control over the platform!

  • Facebook is a closed platform
  • Fan Pages are under constant change
  • you don’t get SEO benefits on your site
  • the content belongs to Facebook
  • you don’t have control over your community

You don’t own the data & that’s what it’s all about.. 

Issue 3

The Privacy Debate is in full swing!

The jury can go either way . The industry push is for self-regulation though we see examples of opportunistic behaviour almost daily. Data Brokers and Google are facing FTC investigations over data mining practices and how we protect out children online is a major issue.

At the core of this is TRUST. Included in the changes that Facebook recently announced to its privacy and governance policies was an admission that it aggregates and shares data on user activity with advertisers — and Facebook says it plans do so not just inside the network but on external websites as well.

This means that the targeted advertising on the right hand side of your Facebook Page can start showing up on other sites you visit.

This recent interview with Facebook’s Chief Privacy Officer is unambiguous:

“Everything you do and say on Facebook can be used to serve you ads. Our policy says that we can advertise services to you off of Facebook based on data we have on Facebook.”

Now that Instagram has been consumed by Facebook it’s logical to expect that the same practices are adopted.

Before I cancel my much loved Instagram account I’m waiting to see if the backlash resonates with founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger…or if in true Facebook fashion….they actually ‘don’t give a stuff.”

Remember..engaging your community in the space that you control has never been more important.

1. It’s the website that you own.

2. It’s your  domain name.

3. It’s your content that you’ve developed for your audience.

4. It’s the relationships you build in the discussion forum that you moderate on your site

5. It’s the data you collect about your community that you treat with respect