Facebook has launched the first change to Instagram since it purchased the social photo-sharing site earlier this year. In a matter of days, Instagram profiles — including all the photos a user has posted to Instagram — will appear on Instagram's website.
Anyone, anywhere will be able to see Instagram users' content unless they have private accounts.
For those who don't like this idea, Instagram's privacy setting is fortunately a simple on/off proposition (unlike Facebook's settings , which can be adjusted in countless ways). By making your Instagram account private, you will be showing your photo feed only to Instagram users whom you have approved to "follow" you. Other users must send you a request to become followers.
To change your Instagram account to private, go into your settings on the iPhone or Android app by tapping the profile box icon in the lower right corner of your screen. Once you've accessed your profile page, tap the gear icon in the upper right corner. At the bottom of the menu is an on/off switch to make your photos private — slide it to the right to turn "privacy" on. By making the change, you will limit access to your mobile Instagram stream, as well as to the forthcoming Instagram profiles that contain personal information and posted photos from your mobile device.
With privacy turned on, you still will have a Web profile, but your photos will be visible only to logged-in Instagram users you’ve allowed to follow you.
To check the status of your online profile, navigate to instagram.com/[username]. Instagram said in its blog that profiles for all users will be posted within the week.
Profiles are laid out much as on Facebook, but instead of one large cover photo, the large block at the top of the page is a collage of photos. You'll see your Instagram user name, your description and a link to your website if you have one, all pulled from your Instagram profile. Underneath the basic information, photos are displayed in chronological order. Viewers can like and comment on your photos.
Instagram recently added photo maps to its mobile service. It lets users specify where a photo was taken, which then appears on a map. These are not included on new Web profiles.
What's next? Instagram makes it a point to say users still cannot upload photos from the Web. But those without iPhones and Androids have been clamoring to get in on the Instagram craze, and anything could happen if Facebook continues to reshape Instagram.