After the drama with Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook earlier this year, it seems that every social media platform has been changing their terms and conditions. While some of the changes have been for the better, such as increasing user privacy and protection when it comes to their personal information, there are some new rules that have definitely been doing more harm than good.
Amanda Bynes’ Past Drug Addiction And Her Incredible Comeback Story
In fact, one rule, in particular, has been the reason for thousands of accounts being shut down by Instagram, leaving users with no ability to appeal, all because of a photo posted to their account. What's even more frustrating about the situation is Instagram's silence on the matter, especially considering it could happen to anyone.
The rule in question has to do with the new copyright laws on the platform that are a lot more strict than users have seen in the past. Those who have been benefitting from the new regulations the most are paparazzi when it comes to people reposting their photos of celebrities on Instagram fan accounts.
Whether you are a fan account, lifestyle page or even the celebrity in the actual photo, anyone who has been posting copyrighted photos has been receiving strikes from Instagram. They come in the form of a warning - Instagram takes down the photo in question, states who filed the claim and warns the user not to do it again. Or, in some cases, Instagram simply deletes the account altogether with no warning.
Since Instagram has yet to publicly explain the situation to users, it's unclear why some users have had their entire accounts deleted versus others only getting a warning.
Gigi Hadid was the latest celebrity to bring the controversy to the mainstream after she had found herself in a lawsuit as a result of posting a paparazzi photo of herself onto her own Instagram page. She was one of the first celebrities to not only mention how this affects celebrities but also fan accounts who have been experiencing this for months before Hadid had brought it to more people's attention:
View this post on Instagram
The Kardashians also brought the subject to the forefront after hundreds of Kardashian fan pages were shut down, as well as other accounts dedicated to celebrities such as Selena Gomez, Dua Lipa, Beyonce and Ariana Grande.
Earlier in the year, some fan accounts attempted to give credit to the paparazzi who took the photos in the caption of their posts. Many even tagged the paparazzi in the photo yet they were still receiving strikes and losing their accounts. In an effort to get their accounts back, some fans even started a petition.
The debate on whether paparazzi have the right to be encouraging Instagram to take down fan accounts as well as sue celebrities for significantly more money than what they had sold the photo to magazines for is, of course, a tough one.
Considering that the paparazzi do own the photos, they technically have the right to file a copyright claim. But both the paparazzi and Instagram's response to these successful claims seem quite dramatic, especially considering people who've had their accounts deleted have no way to contact Instagram to even inquire about the situation. Aside from the fact that many users are providing the photographer with a credit, but are still having their accounts shut down.
While it's clearly fan accounts and celebrities that have become a primary target, this doesn't exempt personal Instagram pages from the results that can come from posting celebrity photos on your own page.
Meaning the next time you want to post a candid of a Kardashian or another prominent celebrity to spruce up your IG feed, you might want to do your homework on who owns the photo. If you don't, who knows, you may be dealing with a lawsuit or even losing your account altogether.