Instagram Backs Down, Or Speaks in Round Terms to Make You Think it Has

Kevin Systrom of Instagram infamy, again (emphasis his, actually):

Because of the feedback we have heard from you, we are reverting this advertising section to the original version that has been in effect since we launched the service in October 2010.

Yayhooray! No ads! Unless…

Going forward, rather than obtain permission from you to introduce possible advertising products we have not yet developed, we are going to take the time to complete our plans, and then come back to our users and explain how we would like for our advertising business to work.

Whoa whoa whoa. I had to read that sentencegraph a few times over because at first blush it’s too grammatically hilarious to tell whether or not it’s patronizing. Turns out it is.

Let’s start with Systrom’s fantasy that Instagram tried to “obtain permission” from us to introduce “possible advertising products.” In my mind, asking permission usually constitutes asking someone for permission to do something, not slipping out a legal document one afternoon that millions would passively agree to if no one had, you know, read it. And that possible advertising product sounded pretty damn actual on paper.

So then: rather than doing something Instagram didn’t actually do, what does Systrom propose? Why, they’re going to take time to work on their “plans” and then explain it to the users when they’re ready. Here’s the thing, Kevin, you already did that and everyone hated it.

My Instagram account is still up but I’ll be deleting it once I know all my pictures and metadata are in order after the holidays.

I just renewed my Flickr Pro account and I have to say there isn’t much I miss about Instagram, not even the people as it seems my small photographic network has made the jump as well. And, you know, I pay them so they don’t clutter up my feed with ads. Win-win, it seems.

Systrom and Instagram (and social overlord Facebook) are on damage control this week, but make no mistake about this latest blog post: there is nothing that will stop Instagram from becoming the cluttered ad network users roared over this week. They’ve got investors’ mouths to feed, after all. I say get out now, while you still can.

By the way: here I am being a pro back in 2007. I honestly didn’t think I’d be back on Flickr in 2012, but here we are.