Rep. Markey raises concerns about Instagram

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The photo sharing service announced new user terms this week that triggered a wave of criticism and conflicting interpretations from tech bloggers. Instagram on Tuesday responded by saying they have no plans to sell the user-submitted photos that are hosted on the site to advertisers, contradicting the interpretation that seemed to draw the most ire.

"Nothing has changed about the control you have over who can see your photos," according to Instagram co-founder Kevin Systrom.

The updated terms of use agreement, which Systrom said would be changed for clarity before implementation, read in part: 

"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."

Markey pledged to "closely monitor" whether Instagram ensures that "personal information is protected and not sold without permission.”

"I am very concerned that Instagram’s new privacy policies and terms of service are putting consumer privacy at risk, especially that of teenagers," he said in a statement. The terms of use agreement includes the expectation that users under 18 acknowledge a parent or legal guardian has agreed to their use under the terms.

Instagram has recently become quite popular among politicians. Although many celebrities and regular users were deleting their accounts on Tuesday in reaction to reports on the new rules, users such as House Republican Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) were still using the photo sharing service as of Tuesday.