Instagram blocks data retrieval and clarifies what information it retrieves

Instagram ▪ Community Guidelines , Terms of use , Privacy Policy ▪ November 3, 2021 - November 10, 2021 - November 16, 2021

In November 2021, Instagram made several updates to its community rules, its terms of use and its privacy policy. Among the notable developments, the platform explicitly prohibits the sale or exchange of “non-medical or pharmaceutical substances.” It says it will remove all posts promoting such products, either for sale or to indicate personal consumption, except in a healing context.

In its updated terms of service, Instagram prohibits creating accounts or using them in such a way as to retrieve information without permission, especially in an automated way. This could have an effect on the work of researchers like those of the NGO Algorithm Watch, a research project of which having already been closed by Instagram in the summer of 2021. The platform also prohibits disseminating other users’ personal information.

Finally, the social network elaborates on the type of data it collects in its privacy policies: metadata about the tools used by the user, what users see or record with their camera, the posts and accounts with which they interact, as well as the frequency, duration and time of day they perform such activities. Meta’s partners receive some or all of that data when their services are used.

This analysis is written by an independent contributor and does not necessarily match the understanding of Open Terms Archive.