Instagram just got a lump of coal in its stocking: a class action lawsuit, which was filed in response to its change of service terms last week. Reuters reports that a California Instagram user has leveled breach of contract and other claims against Instagram owner Facebook. In response, Facebook told Reuters “we believe this complaint is without merit and we will fight it vigorously.”
Although Instagram almost immediately changed some of the terms of service, it still kept language indicating “that we may not always identify paid services, sponsored content, or commercial communications as such.” Instagram also kept wording that gives it the ability to place ads related to user content, as well as a new a new mandatory arbitration clause that means users waive their rights to participate in class action lawsuits under almost all circumstances (the lawsuit comes before the new TOS goes in effect on January 19).
The lawsuit filed by San Diego-based law firm Finkelstein & Krinsk alleges that even if users delete their Instagram account, they forfeit rights to photos they have already uploaded.
“In short, Instagram declares that ‘possession is nine-tenths of the law and if you don’t like it, you can’t stop us,’” the lawsuit says.
Instagram is a free photo sharing application that allows users to take photos, apply a filter, and share it on the service or a variety of other social networking services, including Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Tumblr, Flickr, and Posterous. The application is compatible with any iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch running iOS 3.1.2 or above or any Android device running Android 2.2 or above. In an homage to both the Kodak Instamatic and Polaroid cameras, Instagram confines photos into a square...