News Column

Instagram Photos No longer Compatible With Twitter

Dec 5, 2012

Jeremy C. Owens

Instagram

Instagram has cut off its instant integration with Twitter, another move by a popular social network to keep its users' posts from easy sharing on a competitor's platform.

Twitter said in a blog post Wednesday morning that users will likely notice Instagram photos shared on the San Francisco-based microblogging service appear cropped incorrectly because the Facebook-owned service has disabled the integration between the two services.

In an email from a Facebook spokeswoman, Instagram founder and CEO Kevin Systrom offered an official statement on the move, saying "A handful of months ago, we

supported Twitter cards because we had a minimal web presence. We've since launched several improvements to our website that allow users to directly engage with Instagram content through likes, comments, hashtags and now we believe the best experience is for us to link back to where the content lives."

Instagram announced a new Web portal earlier this month, getting away from its mobile-only roots and offering a standard way to view the photos on non-mobile devices. Wednesday's move will eventually lead Twitter users to the Instagram website when clicking on an Instagram link in Twitter, Systrom said Tuesday at a technology conference in Paris.

When Instagram makes that move, Instagram photos will no longer be visible on Twitter,

Systrom said at the conference, according to reports.

"We've decided that right now, what makes sense, is to direct our users to the Instagram Web site," Systrom said at the conference, according to a New York times report. "Obviously things change as a company evolves."

Facebook, the world's largest social network, purchased the S.F.-based photo-sharing mobile app earlier this year for $1 billion, though that price fell to less than $800 million because part of it was paid in Facebook stock, which fell sharply after a record-breaking initial public offering and before the deal actually closed, on Sept. 6. Facebook is now pushing for a new, Google (GOOG)-like privacy policy that would marry user profiles across its properties -- namely Instagram.

Twitter is no stranger to the "walled garden" approach to social-networking, as it has also moved to block popular apps that access its service and killed easy integration with Mountain View professional-networking service LinkedIn.

Twitter declined to comment Wednesday beyond the post on its Status Blog.

Facebook stock was little affected by the change, trading for $27.48 at 9 a.m. Pacific time Wednesday, a gain of 2 cents from Tuesday's closing price.



Source: (c)2012 the San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.). Distributed by MCT Information Services.