Instagram has made plenty of users unhappy over its plans to change its terms of service in January.
At the heart of the controversy: The company will have carte blanche over selling any photo you post, which means one or more of your photos could wind up in an advertisement — you’ll be seen by everyone, and you also would get zilch in return.
Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) shelled out a whopping $700+ million for Instagram back in April and has been pressed to find ways to monetize the property, and it’s apparent now that advertising will be the focus. And considering Instagram is completely free for users, it’s logical that the company would hone in on using the content to help pay the bills.
Yet Instagram’s move could be dicey and result in a loss of its user base, which could switch to a number of solid rival services, including Hipstamatic, Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) G+, Twitter and Yahoo’s (NASDAQ:YHOO) Flickr.
Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPO Playbook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He is also the author of “How to Create the Next Facebook” and “High-Profit IPO Strategies: Finding Breakout IPOs for Investors and Traders.” Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.